• TUF Live

Vick stuns Cruickshank to complete bad week for Faber

ESPN staff
March 17, 2012
James Vick knocks out Daron Cruickshank © Getty Images

Almost everything went against Urijah Faber on week one of TUF Live, culminating in a shock defeat for one of his top picks Daron Cruickshank, who suffered a brutal knockout against James Vick.

Other than the coin toss, which allowed Faber to set the first fight of the series, nothing went right for the California Kid. And even his match-up worked against him as Vick knocked out one of his top men with a first-round knee strike.

Cruz enjoyed top pick when it came to deciding teams, and he chose Justin Lawrence - widely regarded as the best fighter in the competition. Faber then tried to play clever, expecting that he could leave Chris Tickle until the end - based on a belief that Cruz would not pick him, but Cruz called his bluff.

A sombre moment followed as Michael Chiesa was told his dad had died, meaning that he went home for the week to be with his family. Chiesa later returned to the competition, and will be fighting for his dad as he bids to achieve his dream.

Then came the fight, picked by Faber, with Taekwondo expert Cruickshank pitted against the tallest man in the competition, stand-up man Vick. Cruickshank had been the more impressive of the two men in prelims, but he struggled with the reach of his rival when they stepped into the Octagon.

Barely a strike was landed in the opening two minutes as both men felt each other out, but when Cruickshank shot for a surprise takedown Vick timed a knee that turned out the lights instantly. It was a stunning finish, and gave Cruz instant bragging rights over his rival coach.

Cruz turned up the heat, naming No. 1 pick Lawrence in the next fight. He then completely shocked Faber by allowing him to pick his own man to face Lawrence. Taken aback, Faber hesitated, offered the fight to his team, and none of them stepped up to the plate.

With a huge psychological blow scored Cruz picked out one of Faber's top men, Cristiano Marcello, in what promises to be one of the fights of the series in a week's time.

Team Cruz:
Myles Jury, Jeremy Larsen, Justin Lawrence, Mike Rio, Sam Sicilia, Chris Tickle, James Vick, Vinc Pichel

Team Faber:
Michael Chiesa, John Cofer, Daron Cruickshank, Al Iaquinta, Cristiano Marcello, Andy Ogle, Joe Proctor, Chris Saunders

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