By: Sensei Thad Campbell
Louis Gaudinot came out guns blazing as he made his first appearance since winning his way into the The Ultimate Fighter House. It was the fourth fight of the season, second in the Bantamweight Division and it would be an uphill battle for Gaudinot. Fighting for Team Bisping, the green coiffed wonder would face off with Dustin Pague. Unfortunately for Gaudinot, team morale was down as Team Mayhem had taken the first three fights from his teammates in dominating fashion. He didn’t let that stop him from running into the cage with his trademark smile.
Gaudinot would know ahead of time that he would be facing Pague as one of Pague’s teammates was giving fight matchup information to Team Bisping ahead of time. That gave the Hoboken Sensei extra time to prepare for what Pague brought to the table. Pague had fought previously at Featherweight, ten pounds above the Bantamweight limit of 135, while Gaudinot has all his pro experience at 125, the Flyweight division that has yet to be included in the UFC.
That weight differential would play itself out mostly in height as Pague stood 5’9″ to Gaudinot’s more weight appropriate 5’3″. The six inch difference in height would be reflected in an even crazier, 11.5″ inch reach advantage. Gaudinot was still confident going into the cage however, “I came out here to chew bubble gum and kick #$&, and I’m all out of bubble gum!”
Early in the fight Gaudinot did a great job of closing the distance against Pague and ripping shots under and around the taller mans guard. He would land a series of hooks and uppercuts that had Pague retreating. Pague was an astute opponent, though, and began countering Gaudinot’s interior work with some great knee kicks. It also seemed as though Pague was able to deal with Gaudinot’s power as some solid shots that rocked Gaudinot’s opponents at 125, did little to take Pague off his game.
Both fighters were remarkable in standing in the pocket and blasting away at each other. Pague would land a knee and Gaudinot would blast right back with an overhand right. Then Gaudinot would come in with shots of his own and Pague would counter with a clinch and knees. Many of Pague’s knees were deflected by Gaudinot but the cumulative effect started to take a toll as Round 1 came to an end. Gaudinot would shoot for a double and get deep before Pague established underhooks and pressed him against the cage. He would throw a couple more strong knees before Gaudinot spun out and landed an uppercut and hook of his own to close the round. Clearly impressed by each other’s efforts, the two shared a quick pound at the end of the round.
Round 2 would start much the same as Round 1 with both fighters blasting away at each other. About 30 seconds in things would change for the worse as Pague landed a big overhand right that dropped Gaudinot to his knees and found Pague on top pressing him to the cage. Gaudinot battled back to his feet and tried to turn to his own single leg, but Pague stuffed it and reversed to press Louis against the fence where he would land a plumb clinch and finally shot a knee through Gaudinot’s guard. The shot would drop Gaudinot and Pague deftly took his back and finished in back mount. He would lock in a short choke against the still stunned Gaudinot and eventually force the tap.
“First of all Louis is a tough kid who just kept coming forward,” said UFC President Dana White of Gaudinot’s effort in the fight.
“You’ve got nothing to be sorry about Louis, I’m proud of you I really am,” said his coach Michael Bisping. “I’m just heartbroken for Louis, he’s one of the nicest young men I’ve had the pleasure of meeting, just a standup guy.”
The loss left Gaudinot visibly upset as he felt like he let people down. He certainly didn’t let down his legion of fans in TSMMA as the fight was a war from start to finish and earned the respect of everyone involved even in defeat. We are looking forward to seeing his entrance into the much talked about Flyweight division which may be added to the UFC as early as the end of this year.
Gaudinot has been back in training ever since he returned from his time on The Ultimate fighter and we know he is motivated to come back better than ever. You can follow Louis at @goodnight_green on twitter and send him your thoughts on last nights fight!