Bellator President Scott Coker is not against a trilogy fight between MMA legends Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz, however, he’s not sure that Bellator will be able to promote it.
Liddell and Ortiz, who fought in 2004 and 2006 under the UFC banner, have been going back and forth lately over social media, with Ortiz recently relenting and saying he’d be interested in the fight.
Coker believes Liddell is still under contract with the UFC, which could be problematic for Bellator in putting the bout together (MMA Fighting):
“My understanding is that Chuck is still under contract with the UFC. I’m not sure. I just thought that to be true. I don’t know the details, but when he retired, I think the contract freezes and they maintain some rights.”
“Listen, is it a fight that would be fun to watch? I think if they both pass a physical and Tito was healthy and his neck was healthy and he was able to perform at a high level, and they were fighting, to me is it interesting? I would definitely watch it. But would we promote it? I don’t think we can, because Chuck is still under contract with the UFC.”
Liddell defeated Ortiz both times they fought, the first time by first-round knockout and the next by third-round TKO.
The two were supposed to fight again back in 2010 after they coached opposite each other on The Ultimate Fighter, but Ortiz pulled out with a neck injury and was replaced by Rich Franklin. Franklin knocked Liddell out at UFC 115, and that’s the last time we saw “The Iceman” in action.
On top of that, Coker says the promotion is quite preoccupied hosting its’ Heavyweight Grand Prix, which just advanced its next semifinalist in Matt Mitrione following his win over Roy “Big Country” Nelson last weekend.
“Right now, we’re extremely busy with our World Grand Prix. We’ve got a great tournament going and we have some exciting things you’re gonna hear about in the next couple weeks. I think we’re gonna focus, keep our head down and keep doing what we’re doing and focus on these great events that we’re doing.”
Do you have any interest in a trilogy fight between “The Iceman” and “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy”?