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UFC 134 Conference Call Highlights

One of the biggest shows in UFC history is only a few weeks away from unfolding from one of the sport’s major hubs when the Octagon returns to Brazil for UFC 134 (otherwise known as UFC Rio).

Four of the fighters set to scrap atop the card participated in a conference call earlier today and Five Ounces of Pain was on hand to relay interesting nuggets of information and scintillating soundbytes back to the readers.

Read below to see what UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva, top contender Yushin Okami, former 205-pound title-holders Forrest Griffin and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, and UFC President Dana White had to say about the event, the match-ups, and whatever other subjects come up:


Anderson Silva:

– He is happy, as are his Brazilian teammates, to be part of the UFC’s stop in Brazil
– Says the last time he fought Okami he wasn’t as familiar with competing in a cage as he is now and expects it to make a difference in how things turn out
– It’s very emotional for him to fight in Brazil, feels all the hard work he’s done has led up to this moment
– Doesn’t feel pressure, has trained for a long time and is only excited about the opportunity

Yushin Okami:

– Means a lot to him to win not only as a fighter but as a representative of Japan
– Has learned a lot from Chael Sonnen’s experience with Silva

Forrest Griffin:

– Doesn’t feel any pressure to do anything differently than before even if Rua’s health was in question during that fight
– Says beating Rua ranks below his title and his TUF win in terms of biggest career accomplishments
– Thinks the Rua fight is a reasonably good fight for him and acknowledges there aren’t any easy fights in the light heavyweight division
– Doesn’t matter to him whether he won/lost the first time he fought someone when it comes to rematches, doesn’t expect to see the same “Shogun” this time as he did last time

Mauricio Rua:

– Is very important for him to be fighting in Brazil
– Played a lot of sports as a kid including Vale Tudo, loved fighting movies and action movies like “Rambo”
– Says there was a lot of prejudice in Brazil when he was younger and it’s a “great feeling” to see MMA now in the mainstream, that the UFC coming to Brazil represents the pinnacle of that
– Does not feel extra pressure with the fight being in Brazil, only motivation
– Always felt he would fight Griffin again eventually because he sees Forrest as a top guy, that Forrest is a guy who loves fighting and always comes to fight

Dana White:

– Comments that Brazil has “exploded” in terms of MMA/UFC and is excited about being able to put on an event the scale of UFC 134, says 350,000 people wanted tickets
– Says Brazil will be a regular stop for the UFC in the future with other cities in mind
– In his opinion Okami is the best fighter to ever come out of Japan
– Are also targeting other countries in Latin America / “Brazil is only the first step.”
– When asked if the winner of Rua/Griffin could be in the contendership picture with a win he responded, “Absolutely.” / Says Rua is probably two fights away from earning a title-shot
– “It’s the country where this whole thing started. It’s a fighting culture down there. People really get it and like it.”
– Putting Anderson on the card was a “no brainer”
– “Anderson Silva is fighting for his legacy, Yushin Okami is fight for respect.”

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