The Ultimate Fighter Season 8 Recap: Team Nogueira vs. Team Mir

Brief Synopsis:

The Ultimate Fighter 8: Team Nogueira vs. Team Mir was the eighth installment of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) produced reality television series The Ultimate Fighter, which went into production in late May 2008 and premiered on September 17, 2008 on Spike TV. This season features Light Heavyweight fighters (186-205 lbs) and Lightweight fighters (146-155 lbs).

UFC interim Heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and the #1 Heavyweight contender and former UFC Heavyweight champion Frank Mir served as coaches for the two teams. After the completion of the series, the two met for the UFC Interim Heavyweight title at UFC 92 in December, with Mir emerging victorious.

Coaches and Trainers:

-> Team Nogueira
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, head coach
Daniel Valverde, assistant coach, Jiu-Jitsu
Stankie” Stankiewicz, assistant coach, stand up

-> Team Mir
Frank Mir, head coach
Ken Hahn, assistant coach, stand up
Robert Drysdale, assistant coach, Jiu-Jitsu


Team Nogueira
A. Lightweights: Rolando Delgado, Efrain Escudero, Phillipe Nover, John Polakowski
B. Light Heavyweights: Ryan Bader, Jules Bruchez, Kyle Kingsbury, Shane Primm

Team Mir
A. Lightweights: Junie Browning, Dave Kaplan, Shane Nelson, George Roop
B. Light Heavyweights: Tom Lawlor, Vinny Magalhães, Eliot Marshall, Krzysztof Soszynski

Eliminated in Entry Round:
A. Lightweights: Jose Aguilar, Fernando Bernstein, Charles Diaz, Joe Duarte, Brandon Garner, Brian McLaughlin (Broken Nose), Wesley Murch, Ido Pariente
B. Light Heavyweights: Antwain Britt (Broken Hand), Lance Evans, Karn Grigoryan (Broken Nose), Jason Guida (did not make weight), Ryan Jimmo, Ryan Lopez, Eric Magee, Sean O’Connell, Mike Stewart


Dana White (Host)
Mike Rowe (Narrator)


Episode 1: Ready to Fight

  • Dana White introduces the coaches to the fighters and announces that the fighters will have to fight their way into the house.
  • Preliminary round matches are two rounds for five minutes each.
  • Jason Guida is unable to make weight for the preliminary round and is replaced by Mike Stewart.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski defeats Mike Stewart by strikes in the first round.
  • Dave Kaplan defeats Fernando Bernstein with a rear naked choke in the first round.
  • Phillipe Nover defeats Joe Duarte with a rear naked choke in the second round.
  • Jules Bruchez defeats Eric Magee with a rear naked choke in the first round.
  • Vinicius Magalhães defeats Lance Evans when Evans quits after the first round due to a rib injury.
  • Antwain Britt defeats Ryan Jimmo by majority decision after two rounds.
  • Brian McLaughlin and Brandon Garner’s match is ruled a no contest after Garner lands a knee to a downed McLaughlin’s head. Dana White rules that McLaughlin will move on to the house.
  • Junie Browning defeats Jose Aguilar by TKO when Aguilar doesn’t answer the bell for round two.

Episode 2: Down to Business

  • Elimination round matches continue.
  • John Polakowski defeats Wesley Murch by referee stoppage (leg injury) in the second round.
  • Shane Primm defeats Sean O’Connell with a rear naked choke in the first round.
  • Efrain Escudero defeats Ido Pariente with a rear naked choke in the first round.
  • Tom Lawlor defeats Ryan Lopez with a rear naked choke in the first round.
  • George Roop defeats Rolando Delgado by decision after two rounds.
  • Ryan Bader defeats Kyle Kingsbury with an arm triangle in the second round.
  • Shane Nelson defeats Charles Diaz by decision after two rounds.
  • Karn Grigoryan defeats Eliot Marshall by split decision after three rounds.
  • Dana White announces that Antwain Britt broke his hand and would be unable to fight for about six weeks. Therefore, Britt would not be able to compete and move into the house. Eliot Marshall is selected to replace Britt.

Episode 3: Demons

  • Brian McLaughlin and Karn Grigoryan were discovered to have fractured noses after their preliminary matches. Dana White announces that the Nevada State Athletic Commission has suspended them for 180 days as a result. McLaughlin and Grigoryan have to go home.
  • Kyle Kingsbury is brought in to replace Grigoryan. McLaughlin’s replacement is initially a mystery.
  • Frank Mir wins the coin toss and elects to make the first pick of the fighters.
  • Coaches pick the fighters for their teams.
  • The day after the picks, Rolando Delgado is announced as Brian McLaughlin’s replacement.
  • Antonio Nogueira announces the first matchup: Ryan Bader vs. Tom Lawlor.
  • Ryan Bader defeats Tom Lawlor by knock out in the first round.

Episode 4: Punk

  • The fighters are given the opportunity to watch UFC 84 on TV. Junie Browning and Shane Nelson begin drinking. This escalates to the two of them throwing things in the pool as well as shoving some of the other fighters, attempting to pick fights.
  • The next day Dana White shows up. He talks to all of the fighters and particularly to Browning and Nelson about their behavior the previous night. He announces that he’s giving both fighters a second chance and will not be kicking them out of the house. White tells Nelson that if he is interested in fighting already, White will talk to the coaches to be sure that Nelson is in the first 155lb fight.
  • Antonio Nogueira announces the next match: Efrain Escudero vs. Shane Nelson.
  • Efrain Escudero defeats Shane Nelson in the second round with a head triangle.
  • Following the match, Junie Browning begins talking smack to Efrain Escudero who is still in the cage being looked at by the doctors and his coaches. Escudero simply smiles back at Browning’s continuing taunts. Finally, Browning jumps over the fence and into the cage. Nogueira and other coaches hold him back and the episode ends.

Episode 5: From Chill to Kill

  • The episode starts with a recap of the previous fight. Then, Junie Browning jumping into the cage is shown again. The coaches calm down Browning and escort him out of the cage. Dana White says that the head of the athletic commission wasn’t at the match. If he were, White believes that Browning’s fighter’s license would have been revoked. Later Browning apologizes to Frank Mir and to Dana White.
  • Anderson Silva visits Team Nogueira at the gym and helps them train.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski and others continue pulling pranks on Team Nogueira, this time by freezing Efrain Escudero’s wet underwear and putting itching powder in several beds.
  • Antonio Nogueira announces the next matchup: Eliot Marshall vs. Shane Primm.
  • Team Nogueira returns the previous prank by rubbing fish oil on the walls and beds of Team Mir’s rooms. Vinny Magalhães is angry over his bed being messed with, confronts Team Nogueira and urinates on Escudero’s bed.
  • Nogueira, at the gym, asks Frank Mir to talk to his guys about stopping the pranks, but feels Mir brushed him off. Nogueira goes to the house and encourages his guys to stop with the pranks. Team Mir shows up and Nogueira continues talking to all the guys about stopping the pranks in the house. Soszynski says he will pull another prank.
  • Eliot Marshall defeats Shane Primm with a rear naked choke in the 1st round.
  • A preview of next week episode shows the match-up of Junie Browning vs. Rolando Delgado.

Episode 6: Fight, Fight, Kill, Kill

  • Frank Mir visits the house. Mir questions Rolando Delgado about how Delgado earned his black belt in Jiu-Jitsu.
  • At the UFC Training Center, Mir announces the next fight match up: Junie Browning vs Rolando Delgado. Browning throws a black belt at Delgado. The belt falls to the floor and Browning spits on it.
  • Anderson Silva is still visiting Team Nogueira, and after Junie’s incident with the black belt Silva, off-camera, is said to be extremely upset by Browning’s antics.
  • At the weigh-ins, Junie Browning weighs in at 158 pounds and is given one hour to make weight. He continues cutting, and successfully weighs in with his second attempt.
  • Junie Browning defeats Rolando Delgado by split decision after three rounds.
  • After the match Browning apologizes to Antonio Nogueira for spitting on the black belt at the fight announcement.

Episode 7: Body Bag

  • Frank Mir gives Junie Browning a dressing down following Browning’s split decision win for a lackluster performance in the cage.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski hurts his thumb during training. He believes it is either broken or fractured.
  • Vinny Magalhães comments to Frank Mir that Antonio Nogueira’s Jiu-Jitsu is not of a high level.
  • Team Nogueira bakes a cake for Antonio Nogueira’s birthday. The team and Antonio Nogueira have dinner together at the TUF house.
  • Frank Mir announces the next fight match up: Vinny Magalhães vs. Jules Bruchez.
  • Antonio Nogueira and Vinny Magalhães have an argument over Magalhães’ comments on the level of Nogueira’s Jiu-Jitsu.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski pranks Jules Bruchez by placing a stuffed body bag and a R.I.P. headstone on Bruchez’s bed. Bruchez laughs it off.
  • Vinny Magalhães defeats Jules Bruchez by arm bar submission in the first round (3:25).

Episode 8: Splushi

  • Tom Lawlor orders a fruit platter to eat everyday. However, when he gets home from the training center he often finds it already eaten by Team Nogueira. Lawlor wants to get back at them, so he and several members of Team Mir urinate in Lawlor’s own fruit platter and place it in the refrigerator.
  • Frank Mir announces the next fight: David Kaplan vs Phillipe Nover.
  • Team Nogueira arrive at the house and eats Tom Lawlor’s urinated fruit platter. Only after they finished were they told what had been done to the fruit platter.
  • Phillipe Nover complains that someone in the house is eating his sushi. Kyle Kingsbury of Team Nogueira ejaculates on Nover’s sushi and places it in the refrigerator. David Kaplan eats a piece of Nover’s sushi and after wards is told what was done to it. Kaplan threatens to get Team Nogueira back with fecal matter.
  • Phillipe Nover defeats David Kaplan by rear naked choke in the first round.

Episode 9: Hurts Like Hell

  • Don House, a boxing trainer, examines Krzysztof Soszynski’s hand. House says Soszynski didn’t break or fracture his hand.
  • David Kaplan gets drunk and claims that he cannot be knocked out. He asks Tom Lawlor to hit him. Lawlor at first declines to do so. At Kaplan’s insistence, Lawlor punches Kaplan in the jaw and Kaplan falls to the floor unconscious. Kaplan claims he was not knocked out.
  • Antonio Nogueira announces the next matchup: Krzysztof Soszynski vs Kyle Kingsbury.
  • Team Nogueira decides to prank Krzysztof Soszynski by filling Soszynski’s bedroom up with anything in the house they could move. They then placed a sign on Soszynski’s door that said, “UFC Storage Room.”
  • Dan Henderson visits Team Mir’s training session. Henderson says that he has been training Krzysztof Soszynski for two years now.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski comes home to find his filled up bedroom. He congratulates Team Nogueira for a good prank.
  • Coaches Challenge: The two coaches compete head-to-head for a $10,000 prize and coach’s winning team wins $1,000 each. This season, Antonio Nogueira and Frank Mir will face off doing soccer penalty kicks. They alternate turns and the first person to score 10 goals wins. Antonio Nogueira beats Frank Mir, 10-6.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski pranks Team Nogueira back by moving all of the kitchen utensils, pots, pans, plates, etc. to the basketball court.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski defeats Kyle Kingsbury by armbar submission in the first round.

Episode 10: Fire the Cannons

  • Preparation for the final preliminary lightweight fight between George Roop and John Polakowski.
  • George Roop, during practice, hurts his right hand. It becomes swollen and he is unable to make a fist. By fight time, Roop says that his hand is okay, but it still appears to be swollen.
  • George Roop defeats John Polakowski by decision after two rounds.
  • Krzysztof Soszynski and others thrown things, like eggs, off the balcony of the house to several guys in the hot tub. Junie Browning, who is hit by an egg, goes into a rage. However, there is no real damage to the house and Browning doesn’t get into a physical altercation with anyone.
  • The fighters who won their preliminary matches are brought into meet Frank Mir, Antonio Nogueira, and Dana White to discuss the semifinal matches.
  • The semifinal matches are announced: Ryan Bader vs. Eliot Marshall, George Roop vs. Phillipe Nover, Vinny Magalhães vs. Krzysztof Soszynski, Junie Browning vs. Efrain Escudero

Episode 11: Make Him Pay

  • Ryan Bader defeats Eliot Marshall by unanimous Decision after the third round.
  • Phillipe Nover defeats George Roop by kimura during the first round.

Episode 12: Three Strikes

  • Vinny Magalhães defeats Krzysztof Soszynski by armbar in the first round.
  • During practice, Junie Browning says that he doesn’t want to fight. He suggests that Shane Nelson should fight in his place.
  • That evening, Junie Browning and Shane Primm were discussing future matchups and talking smack to each other. Browning throws a coffee mug at Primm, which shatters around Primm. Browning then goes over and punches Primm.
  • Dana White shows up. White and Browning discuss Browning’s behavior and that Browning should have been kicked off the show already. They talk about how Browning is afraid of failing and is trying to get kicked off the show on purpose.
  • Dana White talks with the other fighters in the house. The fighters agree to let Browning stay in the house and fight in his match against Efrain Escudero.
  • Efrain Escudero defeats Junie Browning by D’Arce choke in the second round.
  • Browning goes outside the training center and claims that he will quit fighting since he was unable to defeat Escudero.
  • A previous bet was made between Frank Mir and Antonio Nogueira that if any of Nogueira’s fighters makes it to the finale, Mir will shave his head. Frank Mir faces up to the bet and lets Nogueira shave his head.
  • Browning, in a different interview, now says that he will fight again.


  • Light Heavyweight fight: Ryan Bader vs. Vinicius Magalhães. Bader defeated Magalhães via TKO (Punches) at 2:18 of round 1 and becomes the TUF Season 8 Light Heavyweight Champion.
  • Lightweight fight: Phillipe Nover vs. Efrain Escudero. Escudero defeated Nover via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) and becomes the TUF Season 8 Lightweight Champion.

Disclaimer: All season recaps of The Ultimate Fighter are re-formatted copies of content from Wikipedia.

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