UFC President White On Cruz Injury and Breaking News on Edgar/Henderson Fight, Plus Faber Talks Cruz, Poirier On the Korean Zombie and Lombard Prepares For Stann
Show airs Tuesday nights at 10:00 PM ET/7:00 PM PT
LOS ANGELES, CA – On this week’s “UFC Tonight,” Host Todd Harris and Analyst Kenny Florian talk to Dana White about the Dominick Cruz injury and how it affects “TUF Live” and UFC 148. Plus, Urijah Faber sheds light on the situation with his biggest rival, and tells us who he wants to fight next. We look ahead to the UFC on FUEL TV card on May 15, headlined by the Korean Zombie taking on Dustin Poirier. Plus, we introduce the UFC's newest Middleweight Hector Lombard, and hear Lombard's thoughts on his upcoming fight against Brian Stann.
Quote of the Week: UFC President Dana White on Dominick Cruz’s injury: “Dominick was training, not with his team, but for the fight with Faber, and he blew his ACL.”
White on how long Cruz will be out: “Typically when you blow the ACL, it’s nine months [recovery time]. Look at GSP. He’s an absolute professional and is in amazing shape. He does everything he’s supposed to and he’s out for nine months.”
White on having two champions out injured: “It doesn't matter what injury they have. It’s never good to have your champion out and hurt. It just clogs up the division and it’s absolutely frustrating.”
Urijah Faber’s reaction to hearing Dominick Cruz was injured and is out of the upcoming fight: “I was bummed, man. This is a fight I’ve been looking forward to, with the build-up right now. It’s pretty crappy to hear, honestly.
Faber on who he will fight next and if it’ll be for the interim title: “I think I’ll be fighting Renan Barao, Ivan Menjivar or maybe Michael McDonald.”
Faber on if Cruz should be pulled as coach on “TUF Live:” It’d be weird to pull him off as a coach. It’s not his fault he got injured. Look at it this way: we’re probably going to fight again. He’s attached to those guys and they’re attached to him. They might as well keep him on as coach.”
Dustin Poirier on whether he’s feeling extra pressure going into his first main card fight: “I don’t know, I don’t feel any added pressure on my end. There’s always pressure to go out there and perform. All eyes will be on us. We’re the main event fight. It’s going to be exciting. But I don't feel any added pressure.”
Poirier’s thoughts on Korean Zombie: “He is a great opponent and has a great chin. He’s tough. He’s a fighter’s fighter. He goes out there strong and he doesn't back down. He’s fun to watch. And I’m excited about the match-up. I like fighters who walk forward and fight.”
Poirier, if he sees the fight going to submission: “It could, but I really see him having a tough time of getting me down. That’s really going to be up to me. We haven't really seen him scrambling or on his back, so I’m not really sure. I am not 100 percent convinced that he’s a brilliant Jiu-jitsu practitioner.”
Poirier on if he feels a win leads to a title shot: “I’m learning on the job and I really want to get better. With my fight against Korean Zombie, if I go out and finish him, maybe after this I’ll be one fight away. But I’m really close.”
Poirier on what he thinks he needs to improve on: “I’m working on everything, every day. This is my job and my hobby. I do this all day. I love it. I watch tape all day. I’ve been working a lot on my wrestling lately.”
“UFC Tonight” Analyst Kenny Florian on Korean Zombie vs. Dustin Poirier: “Both these guys are great finishers, but in different ways. Korean Zombie likes to go forward and make it a brawl. He has knockout power and is looking to finish things off with one punch. Poirier is a more technical striker. He has to stay technical and use his reach to win the fight.”
Hector Lombard on the process of signing with the UFC: “It was very long process, but I’m here in the UFC now. That’s what matters. I’ve been waiting for this for a very long time.”
Lombard on his upcoming fight with Brian Stann: “I’m taking it very seriously and a good performance from me is going to make a statement.”
Lombard on his game plan against Stann: “My game plan is winning. I’m not going to go out there and stand up only. I’m going out there to win. If I have to grapple, I will. If I have to go to the ground, I will.”
Lombard on wanting to fight Anderson Silva next: “I’m focused on my fight with Brian Stann and I’ll go from there.”
“UFC Tonight” Insider Ariel Helwani on Nate Diaz saying he’s waiting for a title shot: “He wants to wait for the title shot. I’m not sure he understands that he might have to wait nine or ten months. I spoke to Pettis’ reps yesterday and they think that Diaz wants to fight and he will come to his senses and do what Pettis did last year, instead of waiting.”
Helwani on the New York legislature not voting to allow MMA in the state: “We are not going to see MMA in the state of New York for at least this year. It’s a horribly unfortunate situation. Marc Ratner, UFC's vice president for regulatory and governmental affairs, is bitterly disappointed about the news. The assembly speaker said he is not bringing this up for a vote. We will have to wait one more year.”
Helwani on if Poirier is looking at the upcoming Korean Zombie fight as a contender fight: “Amazingly no. I think it should be, but he wants at least one more fight to put it together as a complete fighter, even if the UFC offers him the title shot. He said he would probably ask for one or two more, but the UFC may have other plans. Poirier isn't looking at this as a number-one contender fight.”
Helwani on if Korean Zombie is looking at the Poirier fight as a contender fight: “Zombie is lower in the rankings. However, he is looking at this as a number-one contender fight. He told me last week that if he beats Poirier in the FUEL TV fight, he’ll want a title shot and he wants to be the number-one contender.”
“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.