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Morning Report: Kenny Florian responds to Dominick Cruz's post-fight jab over plagiarism incident

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Things got a little tense in the Octagon Sunday night after Dominick Cruz reclaimed his UFC bantamweight title from T.J. Dillashaw.

Speaking with UFC commentator Joe Rogan, Cruz took a parting shot at his FOX Sports colleague and fellow analyst Kenny Florian. Florian was due to participate in the event's coverage from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts, but had been suspended by FOX after concerns he plagiarized sections of a preview article.

Florian addressed the incident Tuesday alongside fellow UFC commentator Jon Anik, who stated that Cruz was "very regretful" of those comments behind the scenes in Boston.

"I talked to Dominick and he apologized to me," Florian said. "He said his emotions were running high and I get it. When I was fighting, you get emotional and you almost take it personally. Dominick is such a competitive dude that he took it personal.

"I picked T.J. and the only reason I picked T.J. was, yes, not only is he a great fighter, but Dominick hadn't competed in so long. With all the injuries, that's why I went with Dillashaw."

Florian remarked on the occasional awkwardness of picking colleagues to win or lose but chocked it up to just part of the business he's in.

"It was nothing personal and that's why I hate working with some of these guys because you do become very friendly," Florian said. "You respect guys and how could you not respect someone like Dominick Cruz? I also had worked with T.J. a bunch of times, as well, so that's what makes this sport tough.

"Picking fights is probably my least favorite thing to do. You don't want to offend anyone and I'm sure Dominick was probably offended by that but listen, the best revenge is getting the win and that's exactly what he did."

After the fact, Florian lavished praise on Cruz for his performance and wondered how much better he could have looked if not for the severely injured foot Cruz brought inside the Octagon.

"I think, to be honest, the only reason the fight was close in my opinion was because of the injury to Dominick Cruz. His leg. Clearly [Cruz] was not able to plant on that leg as the fight went on and later in the fight. He just couldn't move in the same manner and because of that, T.J. was able to land more shots."

Urijah Faber is loudly campaigning for another crack at Cruz but Florian isn't sure anyone aside from Dillashaw has a chance at beating the champ. According to Florian, Cruz and Dillashaw are out in front of the pack.

"I think the guy most deserving [of the title shot] is Dillashaw. Listen, I love Urijah Faber, I really do, I just don't see that fight being close between he and Dominick. I just don't, if I'm being honest. I think the last fight [at UFC 132 in 2011] was semi-close, but really it was just Urijah scrambling his brain to try to find out where Cruz was going to be in that cage.

"It's going to be even worse this time around. Urijah really hasn't changed that much. I don't think he's changed too much from the WEC days. Cruz just continues to get better. I don't think there's anyone else at 135 pounds who is close besides T.J. Dillashaw."

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Watch The MMA Hour with Dominick Cruz, BJ Penn, Carlos Condit, Matt Mitrione, Paige VanZant, Duane Ludwig, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Mark Henry, Chris Leben.

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MEDIA STEW

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Top KO's from the crew fighting at UFC 196.

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More Matt Serra and more Ariel Helwani.

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Previewing Bellator 148.

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Let the promos flow.

UFC 197 Preview: Rafael dos Anjos vs Conor McGregor from E on Vimeo.

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Highlights from the regional scene.

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Free Fight: Fabricio Werdum vs Cain Velasquez.

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Long watches.

...

...

(shorty)

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TWEETS

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Here we go.

Shooting promos for UFC 197||--->>> Filmando promoção do UFC 197 #Jesus #JesusFirst #evolvemma #evolvefightteam #kingsmma #gordojj #AndStill

Posted by Rafael Dos Anjos on Tuesday, January 19, 2016

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MSG.

13 weeks until showtime!

Posted by Jon "Bones" Jones on Tuesday, January 19, 2016

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Not happy.

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"@joerogan might need to go back and watch it again to hear how biased he was commentating"

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Ef em.

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Hmm.

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Beef.

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Together at last.

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FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Jan. 19 2016)

Johnny Case vs. Jake Matthews at UFC Fight Night: Hunt vs. Mir

Vitor Belfort vs. Rondaldo Souza at UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Souza

Marlon Moraes vs. Joseph Barajas at WSOF 28

Chris Gutierrez vs. Timur Valiev at WSOF 28

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Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me up on Twitter @SaintMMA and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.