Chuck Liddell Vs. Tito Ortiz...On the Next Ultimate Fighter
It looks like season 11 of The Ultimate Fighter is already more interesting than this past season.
By naming Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell this year's coaches, the UFC has done both fighters a huge favor as well as announced to the world, that neither man will be in contention for the UFC light-heavyweght title ever again.
That, in and of itself, is a huge plus.
This wasn't a fact that most fans weren't already aware of, but if you were to listen to Ortiz, you would think that the winner of the Lyoto Machida-Mauricio "Shogun" Rua rematch, would be facing "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy," in their next defense.
Another huge plus is both men can captivate the audience in completely different ways.
Each man possesses a good sense of humor. A good laugh is the perfect thing to break up a stressful situation. What's more stressful than being in a house with 15 other fighters, with no entertainment or family contact allowed.
Liddell and Ortiz both took the job as a coach seriously, and after watching Rampage overlook his duties as a coach, it will be nice to see two coaches with the same goal of producing the seasons winner.
With Ortiz, you have a brash and at times outlandish superstar who loves the camera.
With Liddell, most of the time, he let's his actions do the talking for him. Throughout his career, he has done little to no trash talking, then let his fists speak for him inside the octagon.
Never one to produce any highlight reel knockouts, Ortiz is very unlikely to knock Liddell out. For all the "Iceman" fans out there, that is a huge plus.
On the flip side, as Liddell has grown older, his reflexes have slowed down considerably.
Ortiz showed flashes of the old Ortiz early on in his fight with Griffin. He had some spring in his legs, which led to a few nice takedowns.
That is a definitive con for Liddell.
In what has to be viewed as a complete con for Ortiz, he gassed midway through his fight against Griffin. Was that just a product of his time off, or a sign of things to come?
Ortiz still knows how to sell a fight, he can still get people to hate him.
What concerns me, is that he will go all out to accomplish that goal.
That probably means, he will bring up the brutal knockouts that Liddell has suffered over the past few years.
I don't know about you, but I think we have seen the replays of Liddell tasting leather from Rampage Jackson, Rashad Evans, and Rua, one too many times.
We also have to go through a full season of Ortiz trying to fool the world along with himself that he is still a viable contender.
His time at the top has come and gone, that's not to say that he can no longer fight, but his days as a contender are over.
The trash talking by Ortiz is usually pretty funny, as are Liddell's reactions.
Quick to give Ortiz a smile, especially considering he holds two wins over him, Liddell can knock Tito off his perch without a single word spoken.
There are not too many fighters around who are more prideful than Ortiz and Liddell. As I said earlier, that is a huge bonus for the fighters coming on to the show, really looking to learn and improve.
The fight itself will help sell pay-per-views, if and only if, it isn't used as a main event.
The UFC has offered too many non-title, pay-per-views lately, this fight, coupled along with a solid title fight, will make the show a huge success.
Liddell fans will be salivating over the thought of another Ortiz knockout loss, while Ortiz fans, will be looking for their boy to retire Liddell, once and for all.
That right there, is my biggest concern, if Ortiz defeats Liddell, and he does so handily, we will never hear the end of it.
Tito will brag to everyone who will listen how he was the one who retired Liddell. He will also use a victory as an excuse for his two previous losses to Chuck.
I can hear it now, "The result you saw tonight would have been the same in our first two fights, had I been completely healthy."
The disparaging remarks and constant trash talking will be enough to drive fans crazy.
Instead of Liddell getting a proper send-off, the fans will be treated to another Tito Ortiz show.
Now, if Liddell can muster up some of his old fighting prowess, and knock Ortiz out for a third time, then he can walk away with a huge smile on his face, and he will leave Ortiz with nothing to say.
Then again, does another thrilling knockout victory over his nemesis, cause the fire within to burn hotter? Will the roar of the fans, once again get Liddell thinking that he can still fight at a high level?
Find out the answers to all of these questions, and more, on the next "Ultimate Fighter!"