FiveOuncesofPain.com recently caught up with TUF 11 cast member James Hammortree to gather his thoughts on the severity of his recent back injury, being passed up for the wild card spot, his honest opinion on early favorite Nick Ring, and much more.
Check out the second installation of FiveOuncesofPain.com‘s exclusive Q&A session with Mr. Hammortree regarding his experience on the eleventh season of The Ultimate Fighter below.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: I know you suffered a back injury in the previous episode; How did your back feel entering this episode?
James Hammortree: My back was hurting bad. I thought that my vertebrae may have been broken but thank god it wasn’t. I said that as long as my back was not broken that I wanted to fight again and that never changed. Pain or no pain, I wanted back in this competition.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: There was a lot of talk about Nick Ring being one of the favorites entering this season of The Ultimate Fighter; What was your honest impression of his performance in the bout with Court McGee in the previous episode?
James Hammortree: I didn’t think Nick fought well or to his potential. I also know that his knee was most of the reason. He is a great fighter and knee hurting or not, he fought hard.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Court McGee expressed his desire to become the wild card pick in the beginning of the show; Did you still feel confident about your chances of being selected as the wild card at that point in the show?
James Hammortree: When I hurt my back in real time it happened the day of the wild card picks, so I knew that it was not helping my chance to fight again. I was a little down but would have fought anyone just the same.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: When you were training with other fighters that could possibly be selected as the wild card, did you find yourself sizing them up a bit just in case you were to fight in the very near future?
James Hammortree: Traning with them was hard, especially being hurt. I was definitely paying attention but I thought I stood a good chance with anyone.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: What were your thoughts on the bout between Joe and Seth?
James Hammortree: I thought Seth could have fought better, but he earned that one and deserved the right to move on. He proved he still deserved to be on the show.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: What were your thoughts on the wild card picks that Dana and the coaches made?
James Hammortree: I was pissed. I wanted that shot. I wanted that fight, but I was still gonna work my ass off to learn more and always be ready to fight… just in case.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: After Dana announced the first two guys, did you feel confident that you would have the remaining spot?
James Hammortree: I thought I might get that spot but at the same time I knew that the Dana wanted to see their fight go to a third round.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Did you still feel confident about your chances of returning in the case that someone else ended up unable to continue?
James Hammortree: I knew I would be ready if someone went down. I would be in pain with all the injuries I was dealing with, but I definitely would be ready!