The UFC is set to make its network debut this November 12 on FOX, with a heavyweight title fight between champ Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos to take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. Today, the UFC held a press conference in promotion of the bout with a dais featuring UFC president Dana White, FOX Sports president Eric Shanks, Velasquez and dos Santos. Highlights from the presser are below.
Notes and Quotes
-The crowd at the presser is very participatory, alternately booing and cheering.
-“I feel great, it’s good to receive great energy from the guys. It doesn’t matter if they’re rooting for me or not. It matters that they’re here cheering for MMA.” – Dos Santos on Velasquez’s vocal supporters in the crowd.
-“The recovery’s been good. My body feels good, been doing three a day practices now.” – Velasquez.
-Dana White to loud fans: “Give us a minute here, we need to do a press conference. Psychos.”
-In Spanish, Velasquez says that he doesn’t think he’s too small for the heavyweight division and that size shouldn’t matter in this fight because he and dos Santos are near in weight.
-Velasquez believes that dos Santos represents his toughest test yet.
-Dana says that he made this fight because it’s as close to a guarantee of an exciting fight as you can make in MMA, but at the end of the day, it’s on Velasquez and dos Santos to make it a Griffin vs. Bonnar-type of fight.
-For their parts, Velasquez and dos Santos don’t feel pressure to be exciting, because that’s how they always fight.
-Once the show is dialed in, the UFC will figure out where the prelims will be broadcast.
-Ad sales have already sold out for the UFC’s first network broadcast, according to FOX Sports president Eric Shanks.
-“Yeah, I have, but this one’s pretty crazy.” – White on whether he’s ever been to a more boisterous press conference.
-“Just looking at his past fights, he definitely is one of the hardest hitters out there. We’re definitely preparing for that not to happen again.” – Velasquez on whether he thinks dos Santos hits harder than Cheick Kongo.