UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV Show Quotes – 12/7/12 – Henderson: “I plan on beating [Diaz] up.”

UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV Show Quotes – 12/7/12

Henderson: “I plan on beating [Diaz] up.”

Florian on a win for Gustafsson: “This fight could make him a superstar in the UFC.”

LOS ANGELES, CA – The following quotes are from today’s UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV for UFC ON FOX 5: HENDERSON VS. DIAZ. The show was hosted by Jon Anik, with UFC TONIGHT’s Kenny Florian offering analysis. Two-time MMA Journalist of the Year Ariel Helwani conducted fighter interviews on-site in Seattle, WA.

UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV Analyst Kenny Florian on UFC ON FOX 5: “This is a great, great fight card. We have two legends in Shogun and BJ Penn, plus a title fight, a Diaz, and a great fight between Mike Swick and Matt Brown. I expect a finish in that one. Plus, we have two future champs in Rory MacDonald and Alexander Gustafsson. This is the best fight ever on network television.”

Florian on what Benson Henderson needs to do in his fight: “He has to keep his range and kick with his lead leg. He needs to grind Diaz and take him down to the mat. Benson has to make sure he mixes it up when standing. When he can, he needs to wrestle him down and not get submitted.”

UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV Reporter Ariel Helwani asks Benson Henderson how he’ll win the fight against Diaz: “I’m going to fight him and beat him up.”

Henderson on if he’s prepared differently for this title fight than he did for his last? “I prepared the same for this fight as opposed to my first fight and my tenth fight and my last fight. It’s all the same. I’m going to go beat him up and win the fight.”

UFC WEIGH-IN ON FUEL TV Reporter Ariel Helwani reports on Benson Henderson not getting respect: “I spoke to UFC President Dana White yesterday and he says he believes Benson Henderson doesn’t get the respect he deserves from the MMA community and that might be because his last two wins over Frankie Edger were somewhat debatable. I talked to Benson about it earlier in the week and he says he doesn’t want to concern himself with turning non-believers into believers. He says ‘some people out there believe man never landed on the moon and some don’t believe that I should be the UFC Champion. So be it.’ Well a big win over Diaz would help him out.”

Florian on what Nate Diaz has to do to win the fight: “The key is he’s really matured and become a complete mixed martial artist. He’s always had the skills of a top contender. He used to go forward, but now he’s fighting with strategy. He looks like he’s really unbeatable at 155.”

Helwani reports on what this fight means for Nate Diaz: “For Diaz, this is a huge fight to separate him from his very popular brother Nick Diaz, who has never held a title in the UFC. I talked to his longtime trainer and manager Cesar Gracie and he said that Nate is not trying to get out of his shadow of his brother. In fact he’s often said, ‘What better shadow to be in than in my brother Nick’s?’ That’s how close these two brothers are.”

Florian on how Henderson vs. Diaz match-up: “Henderson comes from the wrestling background. I think the fight is going to be won or lost based on how successful he is with his wrestling. You do not want to be in a boxing ring with Nate Diaz. Diaz is too good there – we saw what he did with another striker, Donald Cerrone – so really Henderson has to use his kicking game and when he has an opportunity, put Nate Diaz on his back.”

Helwani asks Alexander Gustafsson how this fight compares to his last fight in Sweden: “It’s hard to explain. Sweden was so big for me. This is the biggest fight so far, but Sweden was another level. Shogun is great. I’m looking forward to tomorrow. I’m preparing in my mind for the best Shogun. He has the most tools of anyone in the UFC.”

Gustafsson on preparing to fight Shogun if he takes it to the ground: “He has a good double leg and a good ground game. And he’s a powerful striker. I’ll be ready for anything.”

Florian on what a win could do for Alexander Gustafsson: “This is a great fight between these two. Gustafsson had an opportunity to become a superstar in Sweden with his last fight. This fight could make him a superstar in the UFC.”

Florian on who will win between Shogun Rua and Alexander Gustafsson: “Gustafsson will use his range and footwork. Look for Gustafsson to get it done with his striking.”

Florian on how good BJ Penn looks: “BJ is back and thinks the last fight really helped him reevaluate things and mix up his camp and bring in some new training partners. This is the best we’ve ever seen BJ Penn. When MacDonald gets in the cage he’s an assassin and he wants to beat up BJ Penn.”

Florian on what BJ Penn needs to do to get the upset: “BJ needs to get on the inside of Rory MacDonald. That’s where BJ Penn does all the damage. Once he gets on the inside, he has devastating upper cuts and hooks, and you have to watch for that left hand of BJ Penn. He finishes combinations with that left hand. Rory has to be careful and keep his range. BJ is also very devastating when he gets on top on the mat.”

Florian on what Rory MacDonald needs to do to win the fight against BJ Penn: “Penn has to deal with that weight of Rory Macdonald round after round. Rory is a very large welterweight and he has a deadly jab. He has to establish that range outside of BJ Penn and when he wants to, get on the inside, not to trade with BJ, but take him down.”

Florian on who will win the BJ Penn vs. Rory MacDonald fight: “BJ was the toughest fight of my career. Rory MacDonald will be the toughest fight of BJ’s career. I’m going with Rory on this one. I think his size, experience and jabs are going to be the difference.”

Helwani reports on Marcus Levesseur: “Marcus Levesseur finished his college wrestling career with a perfect 155-0 record. In fact after his last loss in high school, he had a streak of 296-0.”

Helwani on Tim Means dropping off the card: “Tim Means can’t fight. He hit his head last night. So he’s out of his fight with Abel Trujillo. But Marcus Levesseur has jumped in. He was originally going to fight Michael Chiesa, but Chiesa pulled out with an illness. Now we’ll see Marcus Levesseur versus Abel Trujillo fighting on the FX Prelims.”

Helwani reports on John Albert: “John Albert has called this fight against Scott Jorgensen a dream and an honor because Jorgensen was one of the ones he looked up to in the late, great WEC.”

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