Ortiz will battle Alberto Del Rio at Combate Americas on Dec. 7 and in advance of his fight, Ortiz has been making the media rounds. On Wednesday, while speaking with Rich Eisen, Ortiz was asked about some of his previous opponents, and the former UFC light heavyweight champion was very complimentary of two of his biggest UFC rivals - Randy Couture and surprisingly Ken Shamrock.
“The toughest fighter I’ve ever faced would have to be Randy Couture,” Ortiz said. “I was 30 years old and I thought I was invincible and he outwrestled me and just beat me round after round...
“Ken Shamrock, I’d have to say,” Ortiz continued when asked who he like to talk crap about the most. “That was true hate. But it’s just one of those ideas, it happens in all schools, when kids fight each other they end up being best friends at the end of the day because they hash out all their problems by putting their dukes up. Me and Ken Shamrock, it was a hate, it was a true hate. There was nothing built upon, there was no fakeness at all and we battled out three times and all three times I got my hand raised but he pushed me every single time we competed against each other. I always thought that I was fighting The World’s Most Dangerous Man and I had to be The World’s Most Dangerous Man and that’s how I got my hand raised.”
Shamrock and Ortiz had a notoriously heated feud in the early and mid 2000’s, incited in large part by Ortiz’s disrespect of Shamrock’s Lion’s Den MMA team. The two fought three times (once for the light heavyweight title) and coached a season of The Ultimate Fighter against one another but all the bad blood is now water under the bridge for Ortiz.
That’s not the case with Chael Sonnen though.
Ortiz and Sonnen had a brief but memorable feud in Bellator for what was supposed to be Ortiz’s retirement fight. The feud built off of the time they wrestled each other in college and Sonnen won but, as with many Chael Sonnen endeavors, things took an ugly turn when Sonnen began talking trash beforehand. In the end, Ortiz submitted Sonnen when they fought but apparently Ortiz has still not forgiven “The American Gangster.”
“Chael Sonnen. That guy he just . . . I dislike that man,” Ortiz said. “He’s just something else. Some who talks and talks and talks and has never done anything in this sport besides talk. That’s what he does for a living. He should’ve stayed to that and I guess he is staying to it [since] he’s retired now.
“He said some very personal things about me and I’m a very emotional man, I’m a very loyal man, and when you talk about a person’s family I take it to heart. It’s my blood and I kind of let him have it a little bit. If people go on YouTube and watch Tito Ortiz Uncaged, he said a couple things about me and was talking about me putting on my championship belt and I had to let him have it, full bore. It wasn’t just a little, it was full bore. I put him out for who he really was and he never said another word about me.”
That’s not entirely accurate. While Sonnen did retire earlier this year after getting knocked out by Lyoto Machida, Sonnen has fairly regularly taken shots at Ortiz and called for a rematch, saying in a tongue-in-cheek fashion that Ortiz actually tapped to Sonnen before he locked on the fight ending submission. And true to form, Sonnen even responded to Ortiz’s interview with Eisen, once again calling into question Ortiz’s win over him as well as the legitimacy of his fight with former WWE champion Alberto Del Rio.
You’ve got a “fight” coming up in, like, 3 weeks & you’re STILL talkin’ about ME???— Chael Sonnen (@ChaelSonnen) November 20, 2019
Just admit you tapped
Get it off your conscience
With Ortiz now fully unretired, perhaps this is just the incentive Sonnen needs to step back into the cage himself.
The A-Side Live Chat.
Volkanovski fight camp.
Randy feeling okay after the heart attack.
Alberto Del Rio talking Tito.
Heavy Hands. Discussing the all-time GOATs in each division and UFC Sao Paulo.
SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE
Jon doing MMAth.
OSP KOs Anderson but gets dominated by Dominic. Is it safe to say I chose the toughest possible matchup at 205? https://t.co/vySuTx5ewN— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) November 21, 2019
Any body can fly private but there is only one in this entire world that flies in style. Allow me to remind you, Olympic Champion, Flyweight Champion and bantamweight champion of the world! Triple C #bendtheknee pic.twitter.com/g7DibxsrHO— Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) November 21, 2019
Poor Aljo. He really thinks he’s getting the title shot.
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I’ve dedicated the past 17 years of my life to fighting. I’m now 5 months into physical therapy and my therapists say I still have 4 months to go. I’ve always believed fighting was my purpose. My main reason for being on this earth. But how do you find a new purpose when everything is taken away? How do you find meaning to your life ? No matter how much you want something and how hard you work sometimes the unforeseen happens. Things beyond your control. I did not ask to get injured. But I could either be miserable or find some sort of purpose. During my time off I have realized that I am more than just a fighter. For so many years I defined myself by my job and passion. I thought the only thing that made me someone in life was being a fighter. It is a huge part of who I am but it is not ALL that I am. I am more than just a fighter. And there is more to life. In the time since my injury , aside from working really hard to get better I’ve been able to spend a lot more time with my friends and family. -I’ve continued to take sign language classes & continue in my efforts towards becoming fluent. -I’ve been learning to make chocolate , -I recently started back up with my art , Which I haven’t stayed up with since High school. I try and draw something everyday. - I started teaching a cardio boxing class . I love being able to pass down some of the knowledge I’ve learned over the years with others. And help people stay motivated to stay in shape -And I even bought my first house. And can’t wait to start decorating , making a garden & having people over. -All things I never would have made time for before. I used to put off doing anything that didn’t involve fighting or my career. I feel like I missed out on living my life in some ways. I will be back and I will fight again. I’m too passionate and determined not to. But this time I will have a whole new purpose and out look on life. I still love fighting. The time off has made me miss it. I’ve chosen to find the silver lining with my injury. Even though it hasn’t been easy & I still find myself slipping up & at times crying. Because mentally and physically it’s still a lot to deal with
Before my last fight I was treated at the UFC Institute for hours daily because I was feeling constant pain. With this insecurity in my head I went in to my fight and after the fight I was still working on my recovery. I wanted to fight in march but I couldn’t. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/t2jev8S7at— Gökhan Saki (@gokhantherebel) November 20, 2019
After a lot of hospital visits and fysio, the doctors and my team decided that I just needed chirurgie. I just finished the operation and all went well. In two weeks I hope to be on my feet again and return to my trainings.I just wanted to thank everyone for always supporting 2/3 pic.twitter.com/5uEYNIt3Q5— Gökhan Saki (@gokhantherebel) November 20, 2019
Supporting me and being patient for my comeback. I hope to give you guys soon what you all are waiting for Much love and respect. The Rebel. 3/3— Gökhan Saki (@gokhantherebel) November 20, 2019
Dana and Floyd being buddies.
Floyd Mayweather & Dana White in the building for Celtics/Clippers! pic.twitter.com/o8chLxDJmK— I'M SEEING GHOSTS (@FTBeard11) November 21, 2019
This is the worst thing I’ve ever seen.
Levy Marroquin (12-3) vs. Enrique Gonzalez (8-3); Combate Americas, Dec. 7.
Brett Johns (15-2) vs. Tony Gravely (19-5); UFC Raleigh, Jan. 25.
Tito Ortiz is a genius. He’s still a pretty great athlete for his age and so now he’s just gonna go around beating up fighters who haven’t aged as well as he has. They may have won the battles, but he’s winning the war. It’s legitimately brilliant stuff.
Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.
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