Florian Picks Shevchenko: “Shevchenko is better on her feet than Pena, and improving her wrestling game.”

LOS ANGELES, CA – On UFC TONIGHT, hosts Kenny Florian, Daniel Cormier and guest host Miesha Tate preview the upcoming FOX UFC FIGHT NIGHT: SHEVCHENKO VS. PENA. The crew also catches up with headliner Julianna Pena, as well as Donald Cerrone and Jorge Masvidal about their co-main event. Plus, Karyn Bryant adds reports.

UFC TONIGHT host Daniel Cormier on his upcoming title defense at UFC 210: “I will be defending the light heavyweight championship on April 8 at UFC 210. I get to go in there and fold up Rumble Johnson like a nice load of laundry. No wrestling. I’m standing up with Rumble Johnson. You say you’re going to knock me – prove it to me on April 8th. I’ll be waiting for you. I’m going to stand with this dude. What’s the worst that can happen?”

UFC TONIGHT guest host Miesha Tate on how Valentina Shevchenko needs to fight Julianna Pena: “Valentina is a master at controlling distance. She needs to keep Pena at distance with her strikes. She’s great in the clinch, has great takedowns and has five submission victories, so she can win on the ground as well.”

Cormier on Valentina Shevchenko’s skills: “She’s a very high-level and diverse fighter. She will embarrass you. She made Holly chase her and countered her the whole night. She strikes in a number of different ways. She is very dangerous.”

UFC TONIGHT host Kenny Florian on Pena: “She’s nasty and mean. She’s a high-pressure fighter. Her striking has improved. She will use hands and kicks to set up takedowns.”

Cormier on Julianna Pena’s skills: “Julianna Pena maybe the nastiest fighter in the UFC across all divisions. She wants to swarm you, push you.”

Tate on Pena desire to win: “She is so tenacious, hungry and obsessed. She eats, sleeps and lives MMA. She’s going to stop at nothing to win this fight. She wants to gets arms around her opponent, get it to the ground, and she shines and gets a submission.”

Cormier on how Pena beats Shevchenko: “Her forward pressure and pace will be too much for Shevchenko.”

Tate picks Pena to win: “She’s a beast. She’s going to take this fight to the ground and finish her. She packs a punch. Every punch is with knockout power.”

Florian picks Shevchenko to win: “I think this is a tougher style matchup than a lot of people think. Shevchenko is better on her feet than Pena, and improving her wrestling game, which she’ll need. I think she gets the upset by decision.”

VIDEO: StrikeZone and Predictions: FOX UFC FIGHT NIGHT: Shevchenko vs. Pena
http://www.foxsports.com/ufc/video/862793795580

Julianna Pena on if this is a striker vs. grappler matchup with Shevchenko: “I don’t think that. She’s strong and well-rounded everywhere. You’ve got to believe in your strengths. I can fight on my feet, in the clinch and on the ground. Wherever it goes, I’m comfortable.”

Pena on how she got this fight: “Valentina had been calling me out. I went in to Dana’s office and asked for this fight. I want to fight the best in the world. I’m very grateful and humble and excited to show you what I’ve been working on.”

Pena on if she thought Rousey would lose like she did: “I predicted she was going to get knocked out and she did. So I looked like a genius. She was a bully and was rude to me in the house on TUF. She killed the little kid’s dreams. I had a bad experience with her from day one. I think she’s not a very nice person. I’d love to fight her one day.”

VIDEO: Interview: Julianna Pena thinks Ronda Rousey is a bully
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uURTog7XH4

Cormier on Donald Cerrone’s strengths: “He throws his punches and kicks in excellent combinations. He’s at home in the Octagon. You don’t find people who just flat out enjoy fighting like Donald Cerrone. He’s a tough fighter.”

Florian on Masvidal’s best weapon against Cerrone: “The most underrated aspect of Jorge’s game is his wrestling. If he wants to hit a takedown at the end of a round, he can do it. He’s slick with his hands and is an excellent pressure fighter.”

Donald Cerrone on why Masvidal was mad at him: “I don’t understand. It’s not my fault when the UFC is looking for a last-minute replacement and his name isn’t in the raffle to come up when they need short-notice fighters? Maybe you need to win more fights. The only reason he has the fight is I called Dana three times to get this fight. You’re welcome, you get your paycheck.”

Cerrone on if Masvidal out-wrestled him when they trained together: “I don’t even remember the dude. I don’t remember training with him. I’m a terrible wrestler. I’m sure he took me down. That’s probably true.”

Cerrone on if he’ll still fight at 155: “Yeah, I’ll go back. Why not? I love fighting. They just have to call the bat phone and I’ll take the fight.”

Cerrone on how close he is to a shot at the welterweight title: “I guess I have to wait for the guys on March 4 to see who wins. I will just have to fight March 4 and then fight the winner of the other fight for the title.”

VIDEO: Interview: Donald Cerrone – Not my fault I was offered Jorge Masvidal’s fights, he should win more
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxLMe9q6cuw

Jorge Masvidal on why he’s going to beat Cerrone: “He ain’t got what I got – the guts and glory. The mental aspect – he doesn’t have the mindset. I don’t get discouraged in there. If it’s a fight, I’m there for a fight.”

Masvidal on why he’s been calling for the fight with Cerrone: “Cowboy took food from my plate twice. Twice I had fights with top-ten ranked opponents and for some reason, those got given to Cowboy instead. Imagine you’re going to fight a top-ranked opponent and it gets taken away from you? You want to hurt someone and I’m going to hurt somebody, and that’s Cowboy, and he’s going to pay with interest.”

Masvidal on what a win Saturday night will get him: “One step closer to the title. That’s all I chase. I’m not going to sleep until I get that title. As long as I’m here and my heart is beating, that’s my one goal – to get that title.”

Masvidal on what it would be like to beat Cerrone in his home town: “It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve done that. I know the feeling and it’s a great feeling. I love to fight. It doesn’t matter whose backyard, I’m there to fight. I started fighting in people’s backyards.”

VIDEO: Interview: Jorge Masvidal: Cerrone has to pay for what he did, with interest
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAKUZD8XUOU

Cormier on how title fights should get awarded: “If it’s a sport, it should be based on your performance in the Octagon. I don’t want to hear about popularity. Win and you get the title shot.”

Tate on how fighters can get to title fights: “It’s 50/50. We’re athletes and we’re entertainers. You have to win fights and entertain while you do it.”

Florian on how title fights should be awarded: “DC got a title shot off a loss, because he’s a popular fighter. There needs to be a balance between entertainment and sport.”

VIDEO: Daniel Cormier announces his next fight
http://www.foxsports.com/ufc/video/862793795570