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Andrews: Go ahead, tell Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz they can’t fight anymore

The pay-per-view numbers may not bear it out, but after Liddell vs. Ortiz 3 last night, many fight fans are concerned about where Chuck Liddell (21-9-0) and Tito Ortiz (20-12-1) are heading after last night’s result.

Crossfire Vault: Liddell vs. Ortiz 3: Tito knocks out Chuck cold

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Crossfire Vault – Chuck Liddell: Tito Ortiz is still afraid of me

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Ortiz, the younger and more active of the two at 43 years old, was the logical bet to win, but many still held out hope that an eight year absence from the cage would revitalize the jaw of Liddell and return him to his former Iceman ways.

But Father Time had other ideas.

Tito Ortiz
Tito Ortiz (L) connects on Chuck Liddell at Liddell vs. Ortiz 3. Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-Hoganphotos/Golden Boy Promotions

Liddell looked noticeably slower, reduced for the most part to back-pedalling on the outside from an Ortiz who was still unsure if he could move forward without eating the big right hand. After some initial exchanges, the confidence of Ortiz grew and he put Chuck away near the end of the first round.

The winners get to write the narrative and it was scored as ‘redemption’ for the former Huntington Beach Bad Boy.

Liddell admitted in the post-fight that he could have performed better and that it was a mistake to give Ortiz the early confidence by not initiating exchanges. He will think about his future, refusing to confirm his retirement.

It’s hard to gauge the performance of Ortiz against this version of Liddell. He looked in good shape with good footwork, but was fighting a guy eight years removed from being a shell of himself.

Ortiz also declined to speculate if he will fight again and encouraged Liddell to continue fighting afterwards. The only retirement of the night was from 86-year-old MMA judge ‘Judo’ Gene Lebell.

By the way, the UFC recently announced that Anderson Silva, 43, will fight Israel Adesanya, 29, at Australia’s UFC 234 in February 2019.

So, go ahead: Tell Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz they can’t fight anymore.

The California State Athletic Commission didn’t.


Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.

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