Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will today (May 16, 2012) hold a media conference call to promote this Friday's (May 18, 2012) The Ultimate Fighter episode, which will air live on the FX television network at 10 p.m. ET nationwide.
Al Iaquinta was the first pick of Team Faber and lived up to his billing by winning a pair of decisions, most notably defeating Myles Jury after having a third round forced. Chris Saunders pulled off a huge upset, sneaking past Sam Sicilia via split decision to advance to the quarterfinals.
Vince Pichel of Team Cruz had perhaps the best fight of the season thus far, earning a late submission victory over John Cofer while his opponent, Andy Ogle, also pulled off a huge upset, defeating the heavily favored Mike Rio via submission in their sweet 16 bout a few weeks ago..
We'll have complete updates of The Ultimate Fighter Live conference call after the jump:
Brian Hemminger here. The conference call is scheduled to begin at 4:30 p.m. ET.
4:38 p.m. - They just came on the line and said the fighters aren't back from training yet, the call won't be starting until about 4:50 p.m. ET.
4:56 p.m. - Still haven't started, ughhh.
5:03 p.m. - We're officially getting started. Took long enough.
Al Iaquinta: He knows my style and I know his style, fighting a teammate isn't too different.
Andy Ogle: I would never hold back in practice. The main part of practice is to get caught in sticky situations and develop. You get caught in sticky situations in training so you never get put in that position in the fight.
Vince Pichel: I was thinking a lot about fighting three times in a row. I'm one of the bigger guys and it's not easy for me to cut weight. As long as I stay on my diet and not get injured, then I'll do okay.
Chris Saunders: It is in the back of my mind, having to win three fights in three weeks to win this competition, but right now I'm having to look at it fight by fight. This is the biggest fight of my life right now. If the semifinals come, that's the biggest fight of my life and you really have to keep your mindset in this house.
Al Iaquinta: I don't think it was so much that my parents didn't want me to get involved in MMA, they just saw it as very dangerous and wanted me to go to school as well. They've supported me but they wanted me to do school. I think they see now that I can make a living out of it and there's a lot of options and the sport is growing and blowing up. They've definitely been really supportive of me and what I do.
Andy Ogle: The way I see it, I'm representing my country and I'm not a burdon and I'm wearing the flag with pride. The emotional side, that's just me. I've got big highs and big lows. That's who I am and this whole thing means so much to me and I've got a big heart.
Vince Pichel: My opponents don't take me lightly, but they're looking at me like I'm looking at them. I did finish everyone but I'm looking at every guy like they're the toughest fight I've had. My opponents know I'm dangerous but as a fighter, my opponents are thinking what I'm thinking, wanting to take me out. You can't get overconfident or that'll mess with your head.
Chris Saunders: How do I prove that I belong here? Do exactly what I did in my last fight. Win, and try to finish. That's how you prove yourself.
Andy Ogle: Watching The Ultimate Fighter from the start of my career, I never ever thought that I was gonna be here. It was a dream. I saw the light at the end of the tunnel, but it was just a pinhole. Now its' getting bigger and bigger and I can almost get my hand in it and grab it. It's gonna be a hell of a lot of skill in this contest but a hell of a lot of will, see who wants it the most. It's double the length of the previous Ultimate Fighters and it comes down to the mental game, who wants it more.
Vince Pichel: It sucks and we're all kind of bummed that Dom got injured and he's not fighting Faber but it happens. It's part of the game. It's just as much a part of fighting as winning as losing. It didn't slow us down or bother us that much. We're moving ahead with it.
Dana White will announce Urijah Faber's next opponent on Friday's episode of The Ultimate Fighter.
Tha's a wrap.