The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 Recap: United States vs. United Kingdom

Brief Synopsis:

The Ultimate Fighter 9: United States vs. United Kingdom was the ninth installment of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) produced reality television series The Ultimate Fighter. It began production in January 2009, and began airing on Spike on April 1, 2009. The season featured Lightweight fighters (146-155 lbs) and Welterweight fighters (156-170 lbs). In order to be considered for the show, a fighter had to have competed in at least three professional bouts prior to the tryouts in October 2008.

UFC Middleweight fighter and winner of The Ultimate Fighter 3, Michael Bisping served as one of the two coaches. The other coach was Dan Henderson. Henderson earned his place as a coach at UFC 93: Franklin vs. Henderson by defeating Rich Franklin.

Bisping and Henderson fought each other at UFC 100 on July 11, 2009. Henderson defeated Bisping in a second round knockout.

Coaches and Trainers:

-> Team United States
Dan Henderson, head coach
Cyrille Diabate, Muay Thai instructor
Ricardo Feliciano, Jiu-Jitsu instructor
Gustavo Pugliese, Boxing instructor
Heath Sims, Wrestling instructor

-> Team United Kingdom
Michael Bisping, head coach
Dave Jackson, Thai Boxing instructor
Mario Neto, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor


Team United States
A. Lightweights: Santino DeFranco, Jason Dent, Cameron Dollar, Richie Whitson
B. Welterweights: DaMarques Johnson, Frank Lester, Mark Miller, Jason Pierce

Team United Kingdom
A. Lightweights: Jeff Lawson, Ross Pearson, Martin Stapleton, Andre Winner
B. Welterweights: Dean Amasinger, David Faulkner, Nick Osipczak, James Wilks

US Fighters Eliminated in or before Entry Round:
A. Lightweights: Paul Bird, John David-Shackelford (failed medical exam), Tom Hayden, Waylon Lowe, Rob Browning
B. Welterweights: Steve Berger, Ray Elbe, Christian Fulgium (failed to make weight), Kevin Knabjian, Kiel Reid

UK Fighters Eliminated in Entry Round:
A. Lightweights: James Bryan, Dan James, Gary Kelly, A.J. Wenn
B. Welterweights: James Bateman, Tommy Maguire, Che Mills, Alex Reid


Dana White (Host)
Mike Rowe (Narrator)


Episode 1: Bangers and Mashers

  • The episode was filmed at the Wolfslair MMA Academy in England.
  • Dana White announces that of the 16 competitors there, only eight will be flying to the United States. They will fight in elimination matches to decide who makes the trip.
  • The elimination matches are two rounds, with a third sudden victory round if there is a draw after the second round.
  • The fights actually occurred before UFC 93 so both Rich Franklin and Dan Henderson are present to observe the fights as is Michael Bisping.
  • Andre Winner defeats Gary Kelly by KO at 1:48 of the first round.
  • Jeff Lawson defeats James Bryan by armbar at 1:45 of the first round.
  • James Wilks defeats Che Mills by heel hook at 0:30 of first round.
  • Martin Stapleton defeats Dan James by rear naked choke at 1:28 of the first round.
  • Ross Pearson defeats A.J. Wenn by TKO due to strikes at 0:19 of the second round.
  • Nick Osipczak defeats Tommy Maguire by KO at 4:08 of the first round.
  • Dean Amasinger defeats Alex Reid by decision after three rounds.
  • David Faulkner defeats James Bateman by heel hook at 1:47 of the first round.

Episode 2: Scars and Stripes

  • Dana White meets with Dan Henderson at the UFC training center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
  • White meets with the fighters and gives them a welcoming speech. Jason Pierce passes out due to difficulties in making weight.
  • John David-Shackelford is examined by a doctor and is discovered to have a contagious herpes lesion. He couldn’t fight with it and was excused from the show.
  • Christian Fulgium fails to make weight at his first attempt at weighing in. He is given more time to try and make weight, but is unable to. White calls him out and makes him admit he quit the show.
  • Michael Bisping is not present during the U.S. elimination matches.
  • Mark Miller defeats Kevin Knabjian, his teammate from home, by TKO (punches) at 1:59 of the second round.
  • Richie Whitson defeats Paul Bird by submission (rear naked choke) at 3:11 of the first round.
  • Santino DeFranco defeats Waylon Lowe by submission (rear naked choke) at 0:45 of the second round.
  • Jason Pierce defeats Steve Berger by unanimous decision after three rounds.
  • Cameron Dollar defeats Tom Hayden by submission (rear naked choke) in the second round. Referee Steve Mazzagatti stops the match when Hayden passed out before he could tap.
  • DaMarques Johnson defeats Ray Elbe by TKO (strikes) at 3:10 of the first round.
  • Due to early departures by some fighters, only six fighters have won an elimination round match to be part of Team USA. Kyle Reid and Jason Dent are the only two fighters who have not fought an elimination round match. White says they can’t get into the house without fighting an elimination match, so two additional fighters are brought in.
  • The last two elimination round matches are announced and will be shown in the next episode: Jason Dent vs. Rob Browning, Kiel Reid vs. Frank Lester

Episode 3: Red, White, and Bruised

  • Jason Dent, Robert Browning, Kiel Reid, and Frank Lester move into The Ultimate fighter house with the rest of the fighters, even though they have not fought their elimination matches.
  • Robert Browning, on the first night the fighters are in the house, starts causing problems. He begins by throwing eggs at a group of fighters on the basketball court, urinating in other people’s shower, and trying to get people to fight him.
  • Frank Lester defeats Kiel Reid by TKO at 3:16 of the first round. Referee Steve Mazzagatti stops the fight while Lester has a kimura applied to Reid’s arm. Reid appeared to be unconscious due to a slam he applied to Lester and hit his own head into the mat in the process.
  • Jason Dent defeats Robert Browning by TKO due to strikes at 3:36 of the first round.
  • Dana White will flip a coin to determine which team will pick the first match up. The match up decision will then alternate from one team to the other until all of the first round matches are complete. White flips the coin and Team USA gets the first pick.

Episode 4: Game On

  • Michael Bisping introduces his assistant coaches, Mario “Sukata” Neto, and Dave Jackson.
  • Dan Henderson introduces his assistant coaches, Gustavo Pugliese, Ricardo Feliciano, Cyrille Diabate, and Heath Sims.
  • Dan Henderson announces the first match up, Mark Miller vs. Nick Osipczak.
  • Due to visa issues, Bisping was unable to watch the US elimination matches. He reviews Mark Miller’s match on videotape. Then he focuses on training Osipczak.
  • Dana White gives his prediction that Miller will win the match.
  • Dana White announces that matches will be two five-minute rounds, with a sudden victory round if there is a tie.
  • Nick Osipczak defeats Mark Miller by knock-out at 3:54 of the second round with a kick to the head.

Episode 5: Wiggity Wack

  • Michael Bisping announces the next match up: Andre Winner vs. Santino DeFranco.
  • DeFranco discusses when he tried out for season two of The Ultimate Fighter. After the medical exams, Dana White called him to tell him that he had two brain aneurysms and needed to seek medical treatment. DeFranco was told he would not be able to fight again due to the medical condition. However, his doctor finally cleared him to fight.
  • Andre Winner defeats Santino DeFranco by TKO due to strikes at 3:49 of the first round.
  • A segment of the episode focused on the infighting occurring within Team USA. This was presented in contrast with the camaraderie of Team UK.
  • Dan Henderson announces the next match up: DaMarques Johnson vs. Dean Amasinger.
  • On the day of the fight, Michael Bisping is not present. Dana White says this is the first time in TUF history that a coach did not show up for a fight.
  • DaMarques Johnson defeats Dean Amasinger by submission due to a triangle choke at 1:40 of the first round.

Episode 6: $100 a Tooth

  • Michael Bisping announces the next fight: Martin Stapleton vs. Cameron Dollar.
  • Bisping apologizes to Dean Amasinger for not showing up to Amasinger’s fight. Bisping says he was asleep due to jet lag.
  • Cameron Dollar defeats Martin Stapleton at 1:34 of the first round by submission with a rear naked choke.
  • Dan Henderson announces the next fight: Frank Lester vs. James Wilks.
  • DaMarques Johnson challenges Lester to knock one of Wilks’ teeth out during the match for $100.
  • After the first round of Lester’s match, he discovers that his four front, top teeth were knocked out and stuck in his mouth guard. There was a delay starting the second round while they were removed.
  • James Wilks defeats Frank Lester by submission at 3:06 of the second round with an arm bar.
  • In post-fight interviews, Lester reveals that, as a kid, his four front, top teeth were knocked out and replaced with false teeth. After the match, in the dressing room area, it is shown that Lester coughs up another tooth.

Episode 7: The Bash Room

  • Richie Whitson has contracted a contagious bacterial infection, impetigo, on the right side of his mouth. Jason Pierce sprays disinfectant around the house where Richie has touched things.
  • There are conversations with Team USA coaches and teammates about Jason Pierce’s work ethic and attitude. Jason Pierce says that the US training is really frustrating for him.
  • Michael Bisping brings in a sledge hammer and a tractor tire to train with. The fighter would swing the hammer and hit the tire. Andre Winner missed the tire twice, once breaking the mats the tire was sitting on. David Faulker hits himself in the leg which causes an infection inside his leg.
  • In the Coach’s challenge, Henderson and Bisping play tennis for $10,000. The fighters for the winning coach would win $1,500. Henderson defeats Bisping 6 rounds to 2.
  • Michael Bisping announces the next fight: Ross Pearson vs. Richie Whitson.
  • Ross Pearson defeats Richie Whitson at 3:40 of the first round by submission with an arm bar.

Episode 8: Negative Energy

  • Jason Pierce reports that he has a staph infection in his already injured foot and ankle. He isn’t sure if he can or will fight in his first round match.
  • Dave Faulkner has a gag reflex that causes him to spit out his mouthpiece. Michael Bisping works with Faulkner in the ring to attempt to train him to keep the mouthpiece in his mouth.
  • Dan Henderson announces the next match: Jason Dent vs. Jeff Lawson.
  • Dave Faulkner, Jeff Lawson, and Dean Amasinger hold a falls count anywhere wrestling match in the house.
  • Dana White speaks with Jason Pierce and Dan Henderson. Pierce says that he is ready and able to fight, but acts like he doesn’t want to. White says he isn’t convinced that Pierce wants to fight.
  • Jason Dent defeats Jeff Lawson by submission with an anaconda choke at 2:22 of the second round.
  • White talks with Jason Pierce again. He won’t let Pierce fight because of the fighter’s demeanor and attitude.

Episode 9: Battle Royale

  • Dan Henderson informs Team US that Jason Pierce will not be fighting in the next match. Dana White calls in Frank Lester and Mark Miller and asks them if they would be willing to replace Pierce. Both are willing to do so.
  • Mark Miller is not medically cleared to fight due to a broken nose. Dana White decides Frank Lester will return to the competition and fight David Faulkner even though he is missing four teeth.
  • Henderson asks Michael Bisping about the teams swapping training times. Henderson says that teams are allowed to switch training times each week. An argument occurs between Bisping and Henderson. Bisping does not want to change to the early training time, but offers to have the Faulkner-Lester fight decide the issue. Henderson declines this challenge.
  • When the teams line up for the fight announcement, Bisping squirts water in the face of DaMarques Johnson. They argue and Johnson leaves angrily. Bisping realizes he has made a mistake and attempts to apologize.
  • David Faulkner is still having gag reflex problems related to his mouthpiece. Faulkner goes to see a hypnotherapist to help with the situation.
  • Frank Lester defeats Dave Faulkner after Dana White announces that the match will go to a third, sudden victory, round. However, Dave Faulkner is exhausted and refuses to fight another round.

Episode 10: Smiling and Punching

  • Dana White and the coaches talk to semi-finalists to see who they want to fight.
  • White announces the semi-final matchups: Nick Osipczak vs. DaMarques Johnson, Andre Winner vs. Cameron Dollar, Ross Pearson vs. Jason Dent, James Wilks vs. Frank Lester
  • Dana White points out that Frank Lester is the only fighter in TUF history to lose their first match, come back as a substitute and win.
  • Richie Whitson overhears Jason Pierce talking with David Faulkner about how DaMarques Johnson trains. At a later training session, Dan Henderson approaches Pierce and asks if Pierce is talking to Team UK about Team US’ training sessions. Pierce denies that he is talking to Team UK.
  • DaMarques Johnson defeats Nick Osipczak by decision after three rounds.

Episode 11: More Ups, Less Downs

  • Cameron Dollar has sore ribs, resulting in training to be difficult and painful.
  • Andre Winner defeats Cameron Dollar by triangle choke in the first round.
  • During training, Ross Pearson’s shoulder popped out of the socket. He had Michael Bisping yank on his arm to put it back in place.
  • Ross Pearson defeats Jason Dent by decision after three rounds.
  • Dana White presents the Lightweight, all UK, finalists: Andre Winner vs. Ross Pearson.

Episode 12: All American Nightmare

  • Dan Henderson visits the TUF house and has a BBQ meal with Team US.
  • Frank Lester discusses with Dan Henderson, and later, James Wilks his attitude and demeanor toward this fight. He feels he is much calmer than in his first round match against Wilks.
  • Michael Bisping visits the TUF house and has dinner with Team UK. Dean Amasinger cooks a chicken curry dinner for the team. After Bisping leaves, Andre Winner plays around spitting and throwing food at various Team UK members. Winner throws and hits Amasinger with a gob of chicken curry. Amasinger chases Winner outside and throws Winner into the swimming pool. As Winner starts climbing out of the pool Dave Faulker runs up and throws a bag of flour onto Winner. Everyone laughs it off as a good time.
  • James Wilks defeats Frank Lester by technical knockout due to knees in the third round.
  • The Welterweight final is set: James Wilks vs. DaMarques Johnson.


  • The finale was held on June 20, 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
  • Lightweight fight: Andre Winner vs. Ross Pearson. Pearson defeated Winner via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) to become the Season 9 Lightweight winner of The Ultimate Fighter.
  • Welterweight fight: DaMarques Johnson vs. James Wilks. Wilks defeated Johnson via submission (rear naked choke) at 4:54 of round 1 to become the Season 9 Welterweight winner of The Ultimate Fighter.

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

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