LOS ANGELES, CA – On this week’s “UFC Tonight,” Host Todd Harris and Analyst Kenny Florian look ahead to the Fight Night on FUEL TV in Sweden on April 14. Middleweight Brian Stann joins us from Atlanta and discusses his upcoming fight with Alessio Sakara and why his ultimate goal is to get a rematch with Chael Sonnen.
Plus, “UFC Tonight” Insider Ariel Helwani has the latest on Nick Diaz and when the welterweight may return to the Octagon and also if Fedor Emelianenko will ever fight in the UFC. We also have the Top 5 Submissions of the year so far, a “UFC 101” with Urijah Faber and a new “Chael’s Corner” with Chael Sonnen. Plus, breaking news the UFC on FX: Guida vs. Maynard fight card.
Quote of the Week: Brian Stann on his upcoming fight with Alessio Sakara: “If we go toe-to-toe on this fight, I believe that I have the advantage. I feel like I have more power than anyone in the middleweight division. And I’m happy to prove that in any fight.”
Stann on who he wants to fight next if he beats Sakara: “I haven’t thought about who I will fight after this fight to be honest. This is an important fight for me. I haven’t looked past it. Beat Alessio Sakara, get a finish in this fight. That’s what I want to do. Then I want a top-five guy and get back towards the title fight.”
Stann on the Silva vs. Sonnen title fight: “I think that Chael Sonnen takes it. There are a lot of factors that are going to play into that. Just similar to when I fought Chael, I think he’s particularly a very, very difficult match up for Anderson Silva. Just due to the years and years of difference in grappling and how physical Chael is when he’s on top. We’re going to have to see some new techniques from Anderson that he wasn’t able to showcase in his first fight. But if Chael performs the way he did against Bisping, he could be in for a long night against Anderson.”
Stann on if he wants a rematch against Sonnen: “Absolutely. I don’t feel like I performed my best. Just when I started to get my timing down against Chael, I made a very big tactical error. Some of the techniques we were working on for that fight, they were still a little bit out of my comfort zone.”
“UFC Tonight” Insider Ariel Helwani on if Thiago Silva’s 16-month sabbatical will affect his performance: “Believe it or not, he has seen it as a blessing. I spoke to Richie Guerrero and he said that going into the January 1st fight against Brandon Vera, Silva was not close to 100 percent. His back was killing him. But now he is 100 percent and they are expecting a big fight in Sweden.”
“UFC Tonight” Analyst Florian on how taking a hiatus like Silva has affects a fighter’s performance: “It can be a good thing as you can recover from injuries. Thiago Silva was recovering from a back injury and it allowed him to heal up. But it can be bad thing. The more you’ve been fighting, the more comfortable you’re going to be and the better you’re going to compete. Long layoffs mean it’s going to take longer to feel comfortable in the cage.”
Helwani on the status of Nick Diaz: “Cesar Gracie, his trainer, tweeted a picture of Diaz and said, ‘You haven’t seen the last of this guy.’ I asked him when he expects to find out when the hearing will take place. He said he expects to find out this week. Hopefully it will take place in the next couple months, they’ll have the hearing, he’ll serve his suspension and we’ll see him back in the UFC.”
Helwani on if Fedor Emelianenko will come to the UFC: “I spoke to UFC President Dana White and, he said, ‘Absolutely not. It won’t happen.’ Hopefully we can finally put the Fedor-to-the-UFC rumors to bed.”
Florian on whether Fedor’s career will have an asterisk by it as long as he doesn’t fight in the UFC: “Yes. It’s going to be bold and it’s going to be highlighted. If you haven’t fought in the Octagon, for most fans, then you haven’t fought. If he wants to solidify himself as a fighter, he’ll have to fight on the biggest stage, in the UFC.”
In this week’s “Chael’s Corner,” Sonnen comments about misinformation in the UFC:“Fighters have recently seen it as their quasi-job to continually put out misinformation. They refuse to answer questions head on. There is a difference between what fighters say and what fighters mean.” (Full video coming tonight.)
Florian reveals the biggest lie he told in the UFC: “When I was cutting down to 145, I was telling everyone it was going to be easy, but it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.”
“UFC Tonight” is the official weekly news and information show of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, airing every Tuesday night at 10:00 PM ET on FUEL TV. The show is co-hosted by veteran UFC fighter and multiple title contender Kenny Florian and former UFC host and WEC Announcer Todd Harris. Two-time World MMA Awards Journalist of the Year Ariel Helwani adds insider news.
Follow FUEL TV and the talent on Twitter at: @fueltv; #UFCTonight; @thetoddharris; @kennyflorian; @arielhelwani
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