The UFC and FOX are ready to close out the year in style on December 8 by delivering a card on network television as stacked as any PPV lineup. Headlined by a title-fight between lightweight champion Benson Henderson and polarizing pugilist Nate Diaz, UFC on FOX 5 also features fights from former divisional kings B.J. Penn and Mauricio Rua in addition to a number of other notable bouts.

Some of the event’s key players are set to speak about their respective scraps this afternoon in a conference call with media, and Five Ounces of Pain will be listening in and relaying highlights back to our readers as things unfold on the line. Things kick off at 2:00 PM EST.

Read below for a rundown of what was said:

Benson Henderson

– Doesn’t feel he has to prove himself against Diaz despite criticism about wins over Frankie Edgar, just wants to win / “If he slips on a banana peel, I’ll take it.”
– Henderson says he prefers fighting on TV because of the fans (via Tweet)

Nate Diaz

– “It’s a big’s important. It’s pretty much the biggest thing going on.”
– Hasn’t trained any differently regardless of the increased stakes

B.J. Penn

– Realized he can’t fight forever so he felt it was time to get back in the Octagon / “It wasn’t a tough decision.”
– Respects TriStar MMA and is excited about the opportunity to beat one of their stand-outs
– VADA testing isn’t a means of insinuating MacDonald uses steroids but rather a way to protect his own reputation and that of the sport
– No plans beyond December 8, only focused on MacDonald
– Says Dana White is “the man” for putting together huge bouts and super-fights
– Expects a lot out of himself in the fight, says it was a good thing that the fight was pushed back some to help with his conditioning
– Says MacDonald made some comments about being in shape and said it “lit a fire under (his) butt”
– “Fighting is not a sport for me…it’s a fight for me.”

Rory MacDonald

– Doesn’t care about quality vs. quantity, just wants to fight more often
– Expects to fight again in March or take a short notice bout after he takes care of business with Penn
– Has slowed down his training pace in general to avoid getting banged up
– Didn’t pick GSP’s brain for hints on beating Penn because he likes going into fights with an open mind / “He told me some things that were interesting but that’s about it.”
– Not expecting St-Pierre to be in his corner at the fight

Mauricio Rua

– Taking things “step by step” instead of looking forward to a potential title-shot
– “I think the fans will have a wonderful show.”

Dana White

– No update on the possibility of Georges St-Pierre vs. Anderson Silva / Says GSP is on vacation
– The only strategy with FOX shows is to put on the best fights possible, title-bouts or not
– “I want to say to all the guys on the call, tone your training down a little bit – let’s not get anyone hurt this last week and a half.”
– Reminds fans a “Road to the Octagon” special with Diaz/Henderson airs this Sunday on FOX