Tito Ortiz did what most assumed was next to impossible tonight by not only defeating, but finishing Ryan Bader in the first round of their main card bout.
“I gotta thank Dana White for pushing me to the limit, Lorenzo Ferttita for giving me an awesome job, and for giving these fans what they want to see… and that’s me kick some ass,” said Ortiz after the fight.
Ortiz netted his first win since defeating Ken Shamrock in 2006 by taking out the young gun in classic MMA fashion: dropping him to the mat with a short right hand and then finishing him with a guillotine, utilizing his underrated submission skills.
“I hit him with a right hook and his knees buckled,” he said. “Got on top, a little bit of ground and pound. I secured my elbow on the inside, he tried to pull his head out, I was strong, he didn’t go anywhere. Tap-out, baby. Tap-out.”
The victory came in only 1:56 into the first round; Ortiz absolutely shone when all of his chips were down and earned a necessary win.
The former longtime light heavyweight champion far exceeded the expectations of most, as it was widely held that it would likely be “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy’s” last night as a relevant MMA competitor, if he would continue competing at all after Bader defeated him.
Proving that the ending of any MMA fight can never be declared a foregone conclusion, Ortiz silenced his doubters — at least for now — and improved his record to 16-8-1, earning his third ever submission win.
“It’s such a great feeling to get this win,” Ortiz said. “I’m reinventing myself.”
Bader falls to 12-2 in defeat and is forced to go back to the drawing board for the second time in his MMA career. He was defeated for the first time in his last outing against current UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
Ortiz said all that needed to be said as his name was read the victor during the official decision: “I’m back baby!”