The Ultimate Fighter 32 Ep. 6: Dissension Among the Ranks

The Ultimate Fighter 32 team shevchenko UFC
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 19: Team Shevchenko poses for a photo during the filming of The Ultimate Fighter at UFC APEX on March 19, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

We’ll be recapping each episode of The Ultimate Fighter 32 this year, with episode 6 arriving on July 9, 2024. Alexa Grasso and Valentina Shevchenko are your coaches, while featherweights and middleweights are featured.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, our Ultimate Fighter 32 recap is a little late this week. Better late than never! We’re coming off an incredible performance featuring Bekhzod Usmonov and Zygimantas Ramaska, the best performance and arguably one of the best fights, if not the best, in the past several seasons of TUF.

The has Dana White giving both teams a break, setting it up so they can watch a Fight Night at the TUF house. Team Shevchenko’s Edwin Cooper Jr., however, is sipping an unknown substance from an athletic drink bottle, and is a constant chatterbox. It’s assumed to be booze, and later confirmed as such when Cooper offers another fighter a sip.

Cooper later addresses the camera, a producer suggesting that he did “hit it hard.”

“I didn’t hit it hard. That ain’t hard,” Cooper replied, later added “Nothing going on besides getting ready to train and prepare for my fight.”

Cooper is then seen training for his fight, and he ends up elbowing Ryan Loder, who is not happy, telling Cooper off repeatedly for firing an elbow without elbow pads. Valentina Shevchenko tries to get them back to training, but things break down again. Shevchenko takes Loder to task for blowing up on Cooper again, after Cooper had already apologized repeatedly.

“We see this all the time on The Ultimate Fighter. This thing is a pressure cooker,” says Dana White, noting that being away from their families often causes things to boil over for fighters in the TUF house.

Cooper’s teammates then question whether he’s emptied a number of bottles of booze; he says he’s just had part of it. Bekhzod Usmonov, a teammate at Jackson-Wink MMA, then addresses Cooper, urging him to lay off the bottle. “No more drinking,” says Usmonov. “A bit,” replies Cooper.

Despite all the focus on Cooper, it’s Sacramento’s Ryan Loder competing this week. He’s shown snowboarding; he also surfs, spearfishes, goes diving, basically lots of outdoor activities. Loder also speaks of his struggles at school, but despite that, aimed for college with the support of his mother and wrestling coach, after learning he was dyslexic. After college, Loder wound up coaching wrestlers himself, with Urijah Faber offering to let them train at Team Alpha MMA (Team Alpha Male). Loder ended up training there as well, and was “talked into an amateur MMA fight.” From there, he fell in love with the sport, and his career took off.

“I’m not smart, but I work really hard. And I’ll be the next ultimate fighter,” says Loder.

Opponent Thomas Theocharis originates from Stratford, Ontario but now resides in Toronto in Canada. He sports a tattoo of his girlfriend, who passed away in 2021 after hitting her head in a fall while on a trip to Greece. “Sam was certainly the love of my life, and she was taken away very tragically.”

Theocharis turned to the late Elias Theodoreu after his girlfriend’s passing, eventually moving in with the Ultimate Fighter winner. Then, in September of 2022, Thedoreu passed way. Theocharis is left reeling, suffering from depression and anxiety. While the depression has mostly passed, he says, he still battles anxiety daily.

It’s time for weigh-ins for the middleweight pair. Both hit the mark, and it’s off to the races. Or the fight anyway.

The Ultimate Fighter 32: Loder vs. Theocharis

Round 1:

Loder vs. Theocharis opens with an early takedown from Loder, who begins pounding away with left hands. Theocharis is trapped again the fence, and Loder is in mount. Grasso urges him to use the fence to get up, but that proves easier said than done. Loder switches from ground n’ pound to an arm-triangle, and Theocharis is soon forced to tap. A quick one, as Loder eliminates the Canadian from the show.

Official Result: Ryan Loder def. Thomas Theocharis by submission (arm-triangle choke), Round 1