LOS ANGELES, CA – This week’s “UFC Tonight” reviews UFC 144, previews the UFC on FX: Alves vs. Kampmann, including a look at the new Flyweight division and the possibility of a “sudden death” round to determine the outcome of those fights. Plus, Jay Glazer learns the ins and impossible outs from the “Crucifix” move from Dan Henderson in a new UFC 101.
“UFC Tonight” Analyst Kenny Florian on UFC 144 Edgar vs. Henderson: “It was a controversial fight. A lot of the action was controlled by Frankie Edgar. Then Henderson would land something that would steal the round at the end like a good kick. Edgar had a lot of damage. I think the judges saw that. Henderson showed a lot of swagger. He was very calm. It’s difficult to cut up and bruise Henderson.”
Florian on Henderson’s next fight: “I think with all the rematches that Edgar had to give BJ Penn and Gray Maynard, they should give Edgar one with Henderson.”
“UFC Tonight” Insider Ariel Helwani on Frankie Edgar moving to 145: “Dana White wants Frankie to go to 145, but I just spoke to his manager and he says he doesn’t want to go down in weight. He wants to stay at 155 and work his way back for a title fight again. They think they deserve a rematch for the title.”
Florian on Pettis vs. Lauzon: “Pettis was very impressive. He knocked out Lauzon in the first round. That’s what he had to do to make the case to get the next fight against Henderson for the title shot. He’s very dangerous and matches up well against Henderson.”
Florian on Jackson vs. Bader: “I think we saw a different Ryan Bader. He was mixing it up with this striking. His wrestling was on. It was a masterful performance by Bader.”
Florian on Jackson’s future: “It had to be the injury that was the problem with him not making weight. Rampage has always made weight. I knew there had to be an injury, not allowing him to make the cut. He’ll be back.”
Helwani on UFC’s return to Asia: “I spoke to UFC’s Asia Managing Director, Mark Fischer, a few days ago, and he told me UFC is targeting a return in November. They’re targeting China, the Philippines, or South Korea. That’s where new Lightweight Champion Henderson would like to go because his mom is from there.”
Florian on UFC on FX: Alves vs. Kampmann: “These are two very aggressive, dangerous and technical strikers. Alves is heavy striker. Kampmann can tag you when he’s going backward. Nobody wants to face these guys because they’re so dangerous. This is an important fight. This welterweight division is so stacked. The winner will be pushed to contender status and the loser will go far down in the rankings.”
Florian on what each has to do to win: “Alves will win if he can get his leg kicks in. Kampmann can do it if he can counter Alves and get out of the way.”
Helwani on UFC on FX Sydney debuting the Flyweight division, with a twist: “In Sydney, if either of the Flyweight fights end in a draw, they’ll be doing a sudden death round.
Florian on the Flyweight Debut: “Finally, we’re getting a division where guys like Joseph Benavidez and Demetrious Johnson, who were contenders at 135, are now in a weight class where they should be. To see them at 125, they’ll be very devastating. With the lighter guys, it’s non-stop action. These are very technical fighters.”
Florian on whom Mark Hunt should face next? “It was a devastating win, a great win for him. I’d love to see him go against Stephan Struve. Both of these guys are in the middle of the pack, and a win will put them in the upper echelon. They’ve very different fighters and it’d be a great fight.”
Forrest Griffin on a possible rematch with Tito Ortiz: “We’re both the biggest names with the smallest talent. I’m not sick of fighting him. There’s a comfort knowing what he’s going to do. And he knows what I’m going to do. I want to have a couple more of those entertaining, good fights that people talk about. I’ve got a couple more in me.”