The grand finale of the UFC‘s recent run of events is on the verge of unfolding live in the Lone Star State! Set for October 8 in Houston, UFC 136 will cap off a block of live shows including UFN 25, UFC 135, and UFC Live 6 and features a pair of title-fights rather than the standard single championship affair.

However, before lightweights Frank Edgar and Gray Maynard meet in the Octagon for a third time or Kenny Florian attempts to latch on to the gold eluding him at 155-pounds by beating Jose Aldo, the quartet participated in a conference call this afternoon. Joining them were middleweights Chael Sonnen and Brian Stann, also scheduled to scrap at UFC 136.

Five Ounces of Pain will be tuned in and relaying information back to readers as it unfolds in real time including insight from fighters and the occasional quotation.

Read below for highlights of today’s UFC 136 conference call:

Frank Edgar:

– Kind of used to training for the same guy twice after going back-to-back against B.J. Penn
– Has had to come with a new gameplan for Maynard
– His goal is always to score a finish and he hopes to do so at UFC 136
– Didn’t miss a beat because of his injury
– Feels his respect is coming and it will keep growing as he goes on / “I try to come into every fight with a chip on my shoulder but not for any specific reason.”

Gray Maynard:

– Says the Draw “hurt a little bit” and is excited for October 8
– “I’ve come close to a lot of goals but have also have a lot of goals I did accomplish. They always feel good at the time but then it’s on to the next one. There are always going to be more.” (in reference to coming so close to winning the title before)
– Explains it was easy to get back into the mix after suffering an elbow injury but he still planned his camp out during his downtime

Jose Aldo:

– UFC 129 couldn’t have gone much better for him and that, money aside, just fighting for and defending the UFC belt was an honor
– Has no problem with Florian dropping to featherweight to come after his belt and respects him a lot as an opponent
– Feels comfortable cutting weight but feels at some point he may need to move to lightweight
– Sees a lot more respect for fighters in Brazil after UFC Rio and thinks MMA is the #2 sport there (behind soccer)

Kenny Florian:

– Thinks the group on TUF 14 look talented
– Has had to get used to finding faster training partners as he dropped down in divisions but for the most part things haven’t changed much other than his physique since being a middleweight
– Has a different mindset this time in comparison to his last title-shot / “I feel good. I’ve trained my ass off for this fight.”
– “He’s very unique – a fast, explosive guy. He’s similar to B.J. but more of a kicker. I think he’s dangerous on the ground too. I had to prepare differently for him for sure.”
– Doesn’t know if he’ll be stronger than Aldo and will find out come showtime but feels he’s improved his strength during camp
– Doesn’t think Aldo has faced a guy as “well-rounded, experienced” as him

Chael Sonnen:

– Says he’s been a little sick lately but thinks it’s fairly common to do so before fights and feels a little run down “but it’s kind of a familiar feeling” / Is going to take 72 hours off after the call and recover
– Is happy to be back but not necessarily excited because a fight is a fight / “Appreciative is a better word than excitement.”
– Doesn’t feel he’s changed as a person even after the ordeals from the past year / “I look for battles. Some don’t go your way, some you get a little dusted up, and some you come away with. That’s my life and I don’t back away from it.”
– “I’ll speak for everyone. Nobody wants to fight Brian but somebody’s got to. Our paths have to cross. We’re in the same weight-class and it’s not that deep of a pool. And he keeps whipping everybody.”
– Starts showing some respect to Anderson Silva as far as what he’s accomplished but doesn’t think Silva is better than him / “I’d refer you to the tape. I also think he ducks and dodges opponents constantly. The fact of the matter, whether I like to admit it or not, is that he’s done a better job than anybody. He’s done a better job than me. I think you need to look at what he’s done and tip your hat a little bit.”

Brian Stann:

– Training has gone well and and thinks the match-up in general has drummed up a lot of media rather than anything he’s personally accomplished
– Didn’t think Sonnen was going to talk trash to him because there is no personal problem between the two and wasn’t surprised / “I wouldn’t have taken it personally anyways but I really think the way we fight has generated all the hype.”
– Thinks a lot of Sonnen’s outspokenness on being the UFC champ is a means of a great fighter establishing a mental state
– This is the first fight he’s really focused on 100% instead of doing some of the other work he does in real estate and charity