Miesha Tate brought over a piece of chocolate cake for me. That’s how the third episode opened.

One time, the world was icing over (pretty literally) before one of my fights, so planes got delayed and accommodations were hard to come by. Miesha and I shared a hotel room before I won the Battle of Hoth that particular weekend. Before Strikeforce, before the UFC, before fans and haters. During the time when fighting was just fighting. I had just cut weight, and we talked about things we craved the most during dieting. At the time, mine was that I wanted a big piece of chocolate cake. Hers was actually cupcakes, before she was “Cupcake.”

She hates Ronda Rousey as much as Ronda hates her. I’ve said since the beginning that Miesha and I have always been friendly, but as I said last week, Ronda’s coaching and investment won me over. And I let her know that too.

It’s surprising to me, all the hate that Ronda is getting about how she reacted to me losing last week. Hating a coach for being emotionally invested in their team? Hating someone who is upset that someone they invested time, faith and emotion into lost? I don’t get it. Hate on me, that’s fine; everyone hates on the loser when the underdog wins. But hating Ronda after that? Calling her a bully? Makes no sense.

And perhaps that fight was a smaller metaphor for all this. And perhaps this is a metaphor for life. When you lose—when you are down and out—you can always turn around and see who is really in your corner. Ronda was. Sure, maybe Miesha was celebrating her team. Sure, maybe she meant it as no offense to me. But regardless, Ronda had my back. I would think that would speak well of her. I think people not clouded by hate towards me see that.

So, I wish they would have shown the part of Ronda’s speech that caused us all on Team Rousey to refer to it as the “every single second” speech. She talks about being in the moment, and how I checked out of the second round when I thought she got a little ahead.

“Nobody deserves to win even one second against you. It doesn’t matter if they beat you for 4:59 of the round. They don’t deserve that one second you have left to fight. You need to fight. Every. Single. Second.”

So we all agreed on a team tattoo. If you creep around on Jessamyn Duke’s and Pegatron’s (Peggy Morgan) pictures, you can see theirs. Rocky (Raquel Pennington) drew me a badass design that I plan on getting soon, as soon as I can decide on a place to get it. Great lesson. Great, and needed ass chewing for me.

So they show Juliana Pena talking in what she is attempting to be an English accent. She had been doing this for a couple days. The Brits, Mike Wootten and Davey Grant, mentioned that it was annoying them. We hadn’t been there all that long, so no one really wanted to be the one to tell her that it was annoying. No one except Cody Bollinger and Anthony Gutierrez. So they did. And that really should have been that. They didn’t do it in a mean way or “bullying” or whatever. But she got upset like we were all saying we hated her and didn’t like her and blah blah blah. And it was really just telling her the accent was getting a little annoying. And then, ironically, she says in her interview how it was immature. The mature thing, in my mind, was bringing it up to her. The immature thing was how she took it. I wish I could explain to you… it was six weeks of this crap.

Now, there are two things that are funny about the whole interaction that you see budding this episode between Chris Holdsworth and Juliana. One is, you will recall, she was the one that was saying the last episode how she was here for business only and it was all the other girls that would get distracted by possibilities with the boys. Well, from day one, she didn’t carry herself in the house that way. It’s one thing to talk about being “girly” and still being a decent fighter. It’s a whole other thing to…put yourself out there…the way she did from the start. Not to mention, she had a boyfriend at the time. And those of you that have been cheated on should feel me when I say, I don’t find that cool at all. But whatever, to each his own.

The funny thing about the way Team Tate blew up about the whole interaction that happened with Jessamyn is laughable. Jess went up to Rocky and made a joking statement about how she knew why she was checking her weight after running—“I know what you guys are up to…,” or something to that effect. It’s funny, because anyone could be picked to fight at any time. We all had to be ready. Even I did. I couldn’t miss my chance if someone got hurt or I somehow got back in. So we were all keeping our weight down and obsessively cutting.

So this turns into a huge ordeal for them, and Jess and the rest of us literally knew nothing. Jess didn’t even make an allusion to naming all the match-ups, let alone the order. Did Juliana talk to everyone a lot about what she thought were good match-ups or possible match-ups or whatever? Sure, yeah. But I don’t think anyone on our team listened much to any of what she said about any of that. It’s not like we would trust her even if she did give the match-ups away.

Now, if anyone was in danger of being bullied this season, it was Roxanne Modafferi. Meek, mild, never wanting to step on anyone’s toes, so always in danger of being stepped on. So from day one, we all took it upon ourselves, especially Cody, to really stick up for her. It’s not in her nature to stand up for herself. So when Juliana pointed the finger at the person in the house who not only is the least likely of anyone to ever betray anything either way, but who Cody and everyone was so strong to protect, it didn’t win her any favor. But hey, props to her for apologizing, however genuine it was.

The viewing party at Red Rock was a welcome respite from the glorified prison that is the TUF house. There was a bar in the room, a pool out on the deck. It was awesome to be out seeing other humans and life outside of the TUF walls. As for the close quarters…it doesn’t bode well for rivalries. And you saw it. The bar was like, five feet long. Not much room to avoid whoever is parked over there. And I really like the way Jess described it. Animal kingdom posturing. Because I think that’s what started happening. And then the insulting started. On both sides.

There’s something I learned about the Armenian Mafia (what we referred to our coaching staff as) that day. If you insult one of them, you insult all of them. And they will defend each of their own as though it is themselves. And Ronda is one of them. So they all got up. And when Edmond Tarverdyan got involved, not only did he take offense at what was said about Ronda, but I think he took some personal offense at the fact that they were insulting her striking and pad hitting, which, being Ronda’s main striking coach, is a little understandable.

No joke, I thought they were going to throw down that day. My favorite line of the episode: “We’re tough always. You’re tough behind Twitter.”

I will say that as much as Ronda will be shown speaking her mind and whatnot, Miesha isn’t shy about saying her piece either. It’s just Ronda doesn’t give a fat flying fuck about whether or not cameras are on her.

I didn’t know that much about Chris Beal before his fight. I really got to know him later on in the show. But knowing him now, all the things he has beat down in his life—his brother being shot, beating cancer—a fight in a cage is nothing for this guy. And he is a great dude beyond that too. One of the most loyal guys I have ever met. Glad to call him a teammate. I love you, Beal!

Holdsworth is a guy I am pretty cool with too. I knew he was a black belt, but again, didn’t know much about him except that he had the advantage of working with his coaches that he has worked with back home.

The fight happened, and we lose again. That sucks. And I felt like Beal was doing an okay job, he just never pulled the kill switch. He was hesitant, and hesitation kills. Beal took the loss pretty hard. It was his first loss ever. And having your first loss without being able to turn to your loved ones that you normally would have for support, that’s really tough. But that’s where he and I started bonding and getting to know each other. Each sharing similar experience.

So Miesha picks Rox vs. Jessica Rakoczy as her next fight. And as soon as the fight was announced I saw something happen to Jessica that was terrifying. She morphed from being our team mom, taking care of all of us, cooking for us, cleaning up after us…into the rage demon. A demon I named Ragekoczy…

Photo: Shayna Baszler (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

About The Author

Shayna Baszler
TUF 18 Blogger

Shayna Baszler, also known as the “Queen of Spades,” is a veteran fighter and a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt who is competing on season 18 of The Ultimate Fighter. She made her professional debut in 2003 and has appeared in such notable promotions as Strikeforce, Invicta FC and EliteXC. Baszler has faced many of the sport’s most notable names, including Tara LaRosa, Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, Sarah Kaufman, Sara McMann, Julie Kedzie, Roxanne Modafferi and Sarah D’Alelio. Training with Josh Barnett at CSW, she has a background in catch wrestling and is widely considered to be a top-10 bantamweight fighter. Outside of the cage, the South Dakota native is a certified EMT and counts roller derby and heavy metal among her interests.

  • Pablo Escobar

    *In before the trolls!

    BTW here is what they will post once they are doing their chores to earn another month living in their parent’s basement.

    ” You suck, you’re terrible, you’re cocky, you’re ugly, you killed JFK. ”

    About right? Well maybe the last one was a stretch.

    • Pablo Escobar

      *done doing

    • I love that you guys have bonded as a team and are still willing to stick up for your friends even if they are on another team. I also like the idea of a team tattoo. It’s kind of like – and I’m going to be nerding it up – but it’s like the cast of the Lord of the Rings getting a tattoo. Props to a great season.

    • pssssh

      Living with your parents isn’t always a bad thing. A friend of mine saved up enough money to put a down payment on a house before he turned 28 because he lived with his parents after college. I can’t imagine how old I’ll be before I can do that. Parents’ basement FTW!

  • Dino

    Great article… keep ‘em coming!

  • John Q Public

    I can tell from the way you worded the last paragraph that Jessica easily wins next week. Just like last week when you said Chris Beal gets picked off.

    • Mr Sack

      Shayna is such a bitch to spoil results like that. I hope she gets cancer of the cunt.

      • A mother

        Is there really any need for comments like that? For goodness sake I hope you never have to see hear or experience such negativity in relation to anyone you care about… nasty attitude man, nasty

        • Mr Sack

          Sorry mother. I was just having a bit of fun.

        • CK

          No kidding!! Sounds very immature.

  • Andre

    As per your mention I checked out Jessamyn’s and Peggy’s pages. Cool ink, can’t wait to see the design you’re getting.


    I enjoy your blogs!

    • A mother

      me too – it must be really hard to be faced with really un thought out knee jerk comments form ..well from jerks basically

  • Mwani

    haha I love that last line :D

  • Dana FN White

    You still suck Shayna, your man arms could not save you from tapping out. Learn some humility snaggletooth!

  • Nick

    I get that someone leaping to your defense (even if it is misguided) shows something about that person, but do you really think Ronda was right to be mad that Miesha was “laughing at [your] pain?” I wasn’t there, but they certainly didn’t show anything that even hinted at that. It’s nice that you bonded with your team and all, but, seriously, are you trying to alienate the public? You say you don’t like Julianna, that’s fine, not everyone has to get along. But you give Cody all this credit for defending Roxy when he had just been sitting there doing what Julianna did to the nth degree, which is the only freaking reason Julianna said anything at all on the subject. And she didn’t even say she knew that Roxy was guilty, either, like Cody did about her. I’m beginning to see a pattern with you: you have this way of twisting everything to fit into what you want it to be. You saw that Julianna unequivocally apologized to Roxy, and yet you barb that with, “whether or not it was genuine.” Question: so, when did Cody make his (genuine?) apology to Julianna after realizing he was wrong in his accusations? You said that Roxy was the one most at risk of being bullied. Are you saying that Julianna actually bullied her? If the only thing she did was what Cody did to Julianna, is that bullying by your definition? You also go to great lengths to say that, while your team wasn’t informed of anything regarding match ups, (therefore Julianna couldn’t have told them, obviously), she still was guilty because she talked about how people matched up. Being in the house all the time, who wouldn’t think about the match ups and how they could play out? Honestly, was she the only one? Were all her conversations on the matter one-sided? Was she just talking to herself? Again, you seem to want to see the world to suit your needs. Just like with losing your fight: you only lost because you didn’t “show up.” Why would you completely check out of a fight when you are getting pummeled? When someone is taking your back and sinking in a choke? Exactly at what point would you normally decide you would perhaps try to win or at least not lose? Even if you lose a round, that doesn’t mean you become completely passive. For someone with such a long career, you should have learned by now that you can do a lot towards winning a fight even in a round you lose. Look at what Julianna did to you in the first round. Your mentality can play into the outcome of a fight, certainly, but maybe some of what led to you losing were the things that Julianna was doing well. You didn’t by any stretch dominate in the first round, I hope you realize. Oh, and 99 times out of 100 you win? You go to great lengths to try to convince people that your loss was just a fluke. Again, it would appear that you would prefer to twist reality to suit your own wishes rather than accepting a result you don’t like with humility and determine to come back stronger next time. If you continue in that, you will always be asking yourself why you aren’t where you think you should be.


      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What he said

    • darbycrash81

      Well said, how to follow such a well thought out and well written response. I’ve read julianna’s blog and she only refers to you (shayna) when asked, she seems to have moved on and speaks of other things besides you. You on the other hand still dont get it, still hating on julianna and not giving her the credit she deserves, still showing a lack of humility even after getting beaten. I’d put my money on julianna 99 times out of a 100 if you went at it again. As for Rousey ( I was at UFC 157, rooting for Rousey) her actions and the way she carries herself are turning off former fans like myself.

    • raptor

      Well said!

      99 out of 100 my ass… can’t wait ’til this flop loses on finale night & is officially denied a UFC contract.

      • darbycrash81

        So you confer with your ass on your fight predictions? ; Cool. If all Julianna accomplishes on this show is batter Baszler from post to post then I’m still a fan, but i’m sure she’ll cause more damage before its over. As for Baszler, I’m convinced your angry with Julianna because not only is she a better fighter then you but prettier too; and I’m sorry none of the guys in the house found you attractive but lets move on already.

  • Bob

    If you think Rousey reacted that way out of team loyalty or concern for you, you have a lot to learn about people. It’s quite clear that she blew up to the degree she did and about the fact that Tate was celebrating her own fighter’s victory (the fighter who was chosen by Rousey in the hopes a loss would demoralize the other team) because in her mind she lost. It had nothing to do with you. In her mind, Rousey lost to Tate and it pissed her off. You could have been a piece on a checker board for all it mattered.

    And I’m sorry, but you did not make it clear that you Rousey “won you over” and you we on her side. At best, you sent the clear message that you are neutral on the subject. You took the cake with a smile. You were very friendly. In your last two blogs you try to make it sound like you are completely with Rousey and therefore against Tate, but you don’t really demonstrate that in your actions. Seems more convoluted than clear to me.

    • Renae

      Yes!! I agree with you very well put!

  • MichelleOuld

    Keep on keepin on friend. Osss

  • Mr Sack

    You are such a sour puss. You just can’t accept that Pena beat you and now you’re going to criticise everything about her again and again. I bet your vagina smells like a yeast infected lemon.

    • kgfighter

      real classy sad sack talk about pussies i bet your the biggest one of them all.your comment reflects your intelligence.dumb ass

  • Toni

    awesome article. Big love for you!

  • Why bother watching

    I know you guys think I’m reading too much into things when I say this blog spoils every episode but this is the 3rd major spoiler she’s given away on her blog. I dont even watch the show anymore because I already know what happens a week before it airs. Jessica turns into a rage demon next week and pummels Rox. I want the fights to have suspense. I wish Dana White would see these blogs.

  • raptor

    I don’t know why, week after week, I come to your blog expecting to find interesting behind-the-scenes information about each episode. Obviously Baszler’s articles are just going to be filled with self-serving detours and paragraph upon paragraph harping about Julianna Peña. Get over it already.

    By the way, repeatedly reading over and over how Ronda “won [her] over” vs Miesha… why would Miesha be invested in Baszler’s success on the show? She’s coaching the opposite fucking team! Does Shayna thank her for remembering that conversation years ago and bringing cake? No, she goes off on a tangent about how Ronda’s overreaction is what proves she’s in her corner. I don’t know who’s more delusional, Baszler or Rousey.

    Done with this shitty blog and its shitty spoilers.

  • Joe Shine

    Pena choked out Baszler and made the old lady 33 quit on national TV. Great. Plus Pena has some looks and beauty so she is hated.

  • This blog is over

    Lets allow everyone who loses on TUF get the contract this season. None of them were fighting for their life.

  • lame blog

    bbbbut i deserve it even though i was choked out. I’m entitled.

  • Chris

    I don’t think we’re saying bad things about Rhonda being emotionally invested. But seriously walking out of the cage pass Miesha and crying that she was laughing at your pain? Sad. I believe what’s really sad is how you tried being bad ass and sticking that stupid ace of spades in her bra and saying things like she doesn’t even deserve to breath the same air as me, and of course ” in what real world situation would they ever put shayna vs Julianna “- 3 person who does that. You tried to humiliate her and it back fired and then for Rhonda to cry afterwords about the underdog winning .. Wow. If you won which I’m sure you arrogantly thought you would, you probably would have thrown ace of spades all over the place. You were a good loser though, humble, and maybe that’s what you needed. No more cards ok. I love this show cuz I really do have a different outlook on Rhonda. A word of advise for you, not that it matters cuz I’m seriously a nobody, lay low be humble and return harder without the antics-

  • Rafael

    Let it go, Shayna. Why are you trying to make people hate Julianna? You, Ronda and Ronda are the ones looking really bad so far, bullies, horrible human beings.

    And it won’t help if you keep insisting on Julianna looking bad, just because she kicked your behind.

    Ronda’s made some REALLY nasty things (bullying others, throwing a fit, having tantrums etc.). But, since she got your back, she is wonderful. Julianna fakes a British accent and flirts with a guy, and she is the worst human being in the house… Does it make sense to anyone?

    Now, move on and let go.

    • Rafael

      You, Ronda and Edmond*

  • kgfighter

    shayna your a great fighter i have followed your career before the show and your a great warrior and a good person.not to mention a beautiful young lady.i really enjoy your blogs keep them coming.dont listen to all the jealous assholes especially mr. shit sack, he obviousely knows nothing about fighting your any thing about courtesy to others.keep up the great work and may all your dreams come true.

  • She was crying on the cage ground bleeding,I thought for a moment the ambulance was gonna get called in? I bet special olympics was thinking about that time her own back was taken! How close she was to be submitted in her previous bouts. Some one is gonna sink in and put an end to her career. Tate lost but broke the first attempt of loudmouth first arm bar had her back. When the fight was over Ronda looked tired putting a question about a fight that goes the distance? Next when her opponent’s don’t engage to the ground and start getting her back on the feet? Her game is taking longer to win,let’s see what goes down on the second Tate fight,if it goes to a second round,or third.

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