By Geo. 7 July 2018
News has broken that contracts have been signed for a third fight between Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell, this time under Oscar De La Hoya’s GoldenBoy banner.
Up until now I had hoped it was just talk, just two guys messing around for the media and trying to get some relevance back.
Turns out it’s not though. De La Hoya wants to start GoldenBoy MMA and in his wisdom he thinks kicking it off with a PPV headlined by 43 year old Ortiz and 48 years old and 8 years retired Liddell is a good idea.
To begin with I was asking myself why, but really we all know why. Chuck Liddell could likely use the money. He made a quite ap bit as a UFC talisman and he was living the high life with nice houses and sports cars and when he retired he got a ‘job’ with the UFC where they paid him a good amount just because he was Chuck Liddell, Dana was looking after his boy. That all changed though when ZUFFA sold the UFC to WME-IMG for around $4 billion. Now the new owners had to do some cost cutting and Liddell along with Matt Hughes had to go. I don’t know what Chuck has been doing since then but maybe some money would come in handy.
I don’t imagine Tito’s motivation is money, he’s a pretty sharp guy and it seems he has invested his money well. I think Tito’s motivation is more likely to be ego and the chance of redemption. So these guys fought twice in their prime, in 2004 and 2006 and to be honest they weren’t really all that competitive. After ducking Chuck for a long time Tito finally agreed to battle his former friend and got knocked out in the second round. A few years later they faced again and the result was the same. So if you fight a guy when you are both in your prime, both at the pinnacle of the sport and he beats you twice. Then you fight this guy 12 years later when he is very retired and clearly not what he was and if you win, is there really any glory in that? Do you have your redemption? I don’t think so, I think its petty and cheap.
As for Oscar De La Hoya, he’s seen the growth and potential of MMA and he wants in. I don’t know why he decided that Chuck vs Tito was the way to go, it’s baffling and honestly makes me hope he fails. I know Chuck is grown man but this feels like exploitation and I hope they put him through the appropriate tests because it became hard to watch near the end of his career. There was an interesting tweet from Cris Cyborg(Ray Elbe) and it said Tito and Chuck changing the way fighters are paid. Don’t know what that means but it suggests that the fighters are getting a big slice of the pie and good for them if they are and possibly not so good for GoldenBoy. There is only one company who has made big money in MMA the long term, especially in PPV and that’s the UFC. It seems to be a good way to lose a lot of money, especially this way.
Oh and they are going to do a world tour apparently.
Great, we get to listen to Tito thinking he’s articulate and witty and Chuck slurring and mumbling some kind of response. Can’t wait for that.
For the record, if this happens then I think Tito wins and it proves absolutely nothing.