Category Archives: Tito Ortiz

Chael Sonnen surprised by Wanderlei Silva's shove, says Tito Ortiz's heckling was 'low class'

brightcove.createExperiences();
Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, Videos

NEW YORK – Chael Sonnen isn’t pleased with how Tito Ortiz conducted himself cageside during Saturday’s Bellator NYC main event.

Sonnen (29-15-1 MMA, 1-1 BMMA), who earned a unanimous-decision win over Wanderlei Silva (35-13-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) in the pay-per-view headliner at Madison Square Garden in New York, was a target of Ortiz’s (19-12-1 MMA, 3-1 BMMA) throughout the light-heavyweight headliner.

Ortiz heckled Sonnen the entire fight, screaming obscenities and making crude gestures. Their rivalry recently came to a head with Sonnen’s first-round submission loss to Ortiz at Bellator 170 in January.

Although Ortiz has always been emotional fighter, Sonnen said his antics at Bellator NYC were out of line.

“Tito is a drunk, and he’s a drug addict,” Sonnen told MMAjunkie after Bellator NYC, while lobbing a number of accusations. “Tito is broke. He borrows those suits. I have no idea why they even invite him out here. That’s as low class as it gets. I’m not a guy who is a prude about this stuff. I’m not a prude about someone attacking another guy or building up a fight at all. Of all the things I’ve ever said or done to somebody else, I will sign that contract and step into that cage and answer for it every single time without exception. Tito Ortiz will never get in there. Tito Ortiz sucks.

“He was high tonight. He was drinking tonight. He got booed tonight. I could give a damn less about Tito Ortiz, but it’s very low brow. He’s going to behave like that when I’m on one side of the fence and he’s on the other? It’s like Tito, man, you’re messing with the wrong guy. I will come through here and whip your ass.”

Here’s a look at Ortiz cageside (via Twitter):

Ortiz wasn’t the only person Sonnen had to deal with at Bellator NYC. He also had Silva, who he finally met in a grudge match seven years in the making. As Sonnen was conducting his post-fight interview with Jimmy Smith, Silva shoved him on his way out of the cage and was clearly frustrated by the fact he was outworked in the heated grudge match.

“I was surprised,” Sonnen said of Silva’s shove. “Generally in a sport like this you bury the hatchet, you shake hands. Whether you mean it or not, procedure says you shake hands. You come to the press conference, you give the other guy his due. He shoved me and then he shoved me again afterwards. It surprised me. I didn’t really know how to handle it. Do I go after this guy when we just fought? I just really didn’t know how to handle it.”

Despite sharing the cage with “The Axe Murderer” for three rounds, Sonnen said his feelings toward the Brazilian haven’t necessarily changed. However, Sonnen gave Silva credit for hanging tough through three rounds. However, he wasn’t happy that Silva shoved him while Sonnen was doing a post-fight interview.

Regardless, the victory marked Sonnen’s first since his August 2013 submission of Mauricio Rua under the UFC banner. He’s spent most of that time inactive from competition, in part due to failed drug tests and a short-lived retirement, and said he was simply happy to get his hand raised.

“It’s the second time I’ve fought in four years,” Sonnen said. “I’ve been in the principal’s office for a little bit of time. I want to get my hand raised. Everything else that comes in between, it doesn’t make a difference to me. I’ll take a win by disqualification and hold my head up high.

“There’s plenty of ways to skin a cat in this business. Wanderlei is a tough guy. That’s the reality. I don’t like Wanderlei Silva. I’m not going to compliment him, but I’m also not going to lie. He’s a tough guy. He held on tight. He’s a strong guy and there you go.”

For complete coverage of Bellator NYC and Bellator 180, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: “https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets”, analyticsCallback: “galleryAnalytics”, fullscreenUrl: “http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/BNrCYvnnacR4wenpegWFge/255083”, customAnalytics: true, title: “Sonnen def. Silva”, feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == “undefined”) ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie

Fans invited to this week's Bellator NYC weigh-ins, Q&A, fan fest in New York City

brightcove.createExperiences();
Filed under: Bellator, News

Bellator’s long-awaited return to pay-per-view takes place this week, and fans can get up close and personal with some MMA legends.

Fans are invited to the weigh-ins for Bellator NYC, as well as a Q&A session with four MMA legends and a fan fest on Friday in New York City. Bellator NYC takes place Saturday at Madison Square Garden with a main card on pay-per-view following the Bellator 180 portion of the event on Spike and MMAjunkie.

The Q&A and ceremonial Bellator NYC weigh-ins take place at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. Doors open to fans at 4 p.m. ET. At 4:30 p.m., fans can meet the Bellator ring girls. At 5 p.m., a “Legends” Q&A takes place with Tito Ortiz, Randy Couture, Royce Gracie and Dan Henderson. And the ceremonial weigh-ins for the event kick off at 6 p.m.

After that, members of the “Bellator Nation” fan club can head to Dave & Buster’s in Times Square for a chance to meet Ortiz and Gracie, who will be on hand from 8-11 p.m. ET. The event is free with an RSVP by Bellator Nation members, who can sign up at bellator.com/fanfest.

In the Bellator NYC main event, Chael Sonnen (29-15-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) takes on Wanderlei Silva (35-12-1 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) in a long-awaited grudge match. In the co-feature, heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko (36-4 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) fights Matt Mitrione (11-5 MMA, 2-0 BMMA). The pay-per-view portion also features a pair of title fights. Welterweight champion Douglas Lima (28-6 MMA, 10-2 BMMA) takes on new acquisition Lorenz Larkin (18-5 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), and lightweight champ Michael Chandler (16-3 MMA, 13-3 BMMA) meets Brent Primus (7-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA). Plus, in the main event of the Bellator 180 portion on Spike, light heavyweight champ Phil Davis (17-3 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) rematches recent signee Ryan Bader (22-5 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) with the title on the line.

For more on Bellator NYC and Bellator 180, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz 3? Chael Sonnen would watch, but isn't betting it will happen

Bellator NYC headliner Chael Sonnen expects UFC Hall of Famers Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell to return to the cage – he just doesn’t think they will fight each other.

“I do think Chuck is likely to compete again just because I take him at his word and I know he wants to, and I think Tito’s going to have to someday,” Sonnen today told MMAjunkie Radio. “But I don’t think we’ll see a trilogy.”

After falling short to Ortiz in a January grudge match, Sonnen (29-14-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) is set to settle a longstanding feud with Wanderlei Silva (35-12-1 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) on pay-per-view at Madison Square Garden in New York City next Saturday. But the fight isn’t the only marketable rivalry at light heavyweight.

Ortiz (19-12-1 MMA, 3-1 BMMA) and Liddell (21-8 MMA, 16-6 UFC) easily fit the promotional model employed by Bellator chief Scott Coker, who frequently signs old UFC stars to headline Spike-televised events.

“I’m in for it,” Sonnen said. “I like fun fights. They don’t all have to be meaningful; they don’t all have to be contendership or championship fights. So does it make sense? I don’t know if I could argue that completely, but would I tune in? Yeah.”

The former UFC champs got the MMA world talking when Liddell posted a picture of the two facing off, harkening back to the longstanding grudge that fueled two pay-per-view title fights and a stint as opposing coaches on “The Ultimate Fighter 11.”

Instagram Photo

Things appeared to be moving toward a trilogy with both fighters coming out of retirement. But then Ortiz apologized to Liddell in what many might call an uncharacteristic gesture of maturity for the brash fighter.

Liddell, of course, has twice made Ortiz eat his words. But a third fight would be money in the bank for both fighters, not to mention Bellator, even if it’s unclear whether Liddell is free of his UFC contract, which was frozen when he retired to take a behind-the-scenes job with the industry leader.

To Sonnen, one of the sport’s most astute promoters, Ortiz’s actions weren’t those of someone looking to settle a score. He expects Ortiz to return to the cage some day, but against an opponent with more competitive upside.

“I would definitely watch those guys fight, but I don’t want to see anybody fight unless both of the guys want to fight,” Sonnen said. “Even if I’m on a playground, if one kid doesn’t want to do it, I’m out. Somebody needs to break that up. I don’t think that fight’s going to happen. I do think Chuck is likely to compete again just because I take him at his word and I know he wants to, and I think Tito’s going to have to some day.”

Still sour from a first-round submission loss to Ortiz in his retirement fight at Bellator 170, Sonnen would love another crack at the retired champ, whom he calls “absolutely terrible.”

“I think Tito’s going to come back a little bit down the road,” he said. “I think he’s still got a couple of bucks from (ex-girlfriend) Jenna (Jameson) left over and she hasn’t kicked him out of the house yet, and he sucks. I think he’s got a couple of things against him, but eventually, there will be a cash grab.”

It just won’t come against Liddell.

For his part, Sonnen isn’t suffering for any lack of motivation getting ready for his showdown with Silva. The loss to Ortiz sent him back to the gym with a mission to prove he is better than his most recent showing.

There’s nothing staged about his rivalry, though. Sonnen said Bellator would be wise to keep him away from Silva as the fight approaches. What could happen might light up social media, but also cost the fighters a few thousand dollars in commission fines.

For more on Bellator NYC and Bellator 180, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

MMAjunkie Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News
Source: MMA Junkie