How many years have we been waiting for this to happen again? Oh nevermind, the third match is now on for former UFC light heavyweight champions and irrefutable MMA legends Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz.
Decade-awaited fight of MMA oldies but goodies
Well, great thanks to Oscar De La Hoya penetrating the MMA sphere for his new Golden Boy promotion, the long-anticipated fight will happen later this year. The fight’s schedule is not yet set, regardless, the bout is a yes on both parties.
ESPN’s Brett Okamoto first reported the merry news and fans, of course, are giddying for the fight which will be available on pay-per-view.
Here is Dela Hoya joyfully spreading the word:
“I’m proud to announce we’ve signed a deal for the fight between Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz. This will be huge for sports fans around the world. Ortiz and Liddell are two of the most recognized fighters in MMA history. They are legends in the sport.”
There’s always a reason for every fight
Dela Hoya continues:
“Everyone remembers their rivalry helped put the sport on the map, and we’re excited to host the next and final chapter of this historic rivalry.”
The now 48-year-old Chuck Liddell’s last fight happened way back June 2010, when Rich Franklin sent him down in a knock-out strike. This was the former UFC light heavyweight champion’s third defeat by KO, prior to his recent loss by Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Rashad Evans.
His tainted record is now at 21-8.
Tito Ortiz, who’s now 43 years old had a more recent fight. It was January of last year when Ortiz beat Chael Sonnen by decision.
He has a 19-12-1 overall record.
Liddell and Tito are now on to rekindle their infamous rivalry in a trilogy bout everyone is bargaining for.
Ortiz on ESPN’s Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show:
“Oscar said, ‘Let’s get this done.’ I said, ‘Let’s get this done,’ and it took about 2½ months to make Chuck happy enough to make it happen, and it’s signed. This fight is going to happen this year.”
Meanwhile Liddell in two words:
This event will mark the first foray of Dela Hoya’s Golden Boy into MMA. Nearly 12 years after Liddell knocked out Ortiz in the third round of their second bout at UFC 226 in 2006, the former boxing champ is making it happen again.
Liddell on an interview with ESPN:
“It feels great to sign a deal, to be honest with you. It’s as exciting as I knew it would be. Golden Boy offers something different. We’re partners in this. And I never get sick of punching Tito.”
Meanwhile, Ortiz getting excited more than ever:
“I’m only interested in fighting Chuck at this time. If anything, the rivalry is worse than it ever was. This isn’t made for TV. This is as real as it gets.”