Just when you thought MMA couldn’t get any stranger than it already is.
Former UFC champions Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz are one step closer to fighting each other again.
Liddell confirmed on The MMA Hour Monday that he is returning to the sport, as he targets a third bout vs. Ortiz with promoter Oscar de la Hoya.
“I will fight again,” Liddell said. “It’s a real thing. They’re working on it.
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) May 14, 2018
Early plans are for November in either Las Vegas or California under the Golden Boy Promotions banner. De La Hoya, a former boxing champion, recently mentioned the idea of getting into the MMA business.
While Ortiz has previously stated he would only return for Liddell, the same is not true for “The Iceman.”
“I miss it. I never stopped missing it. And I kinda hadn’t really thought about it much,” Liddell said (thanks to MMA Fighting for the quotes). “And then when he brought it up and we started getting going, and I started training and I started doing stuff again, getting ready to try to take this on, it made me go, ‘You know what, what if he pulls out? Am I not going to fight? Am I going to do all of this and not fight?’ Oh no, we had to have somebody backing up, and if it doesn’t work out with him, I’m (still) going to give it a shot. It’ll be somebody else, one of the guys from my past probably, most likely, and we’ll see where I’m at.”
Liddell, 48 years old, will have been gone from the sport for eight years this June. He was knocked out by Rich Franklin that year at UFC 115, his third consecutive knockout loss.
Ortiz, who turned 43 years old this year and is 0-2 vs. Liddell lifetime, fought in 2017, besting Chael Sonnen via submission for his first win in three years.