By Lorenzo Luciano:
With one win a piece, Tito Ortiz and Forest Griffin are set to meet at UFC 148 on July 7th in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. They will complete a trilogy which will undoubtedly be a very entertaining match between the two mighty sluggers. Tito was once a dominating force at the light heavyweight weight class unleashing fierce ‘ground and pound’ on his opponents as never seen before.
“It’s my final hurrah, Forrest brings the best out of me and vice-versa, and on July 7 we’re gonna get some late fireworks, I’ve had some major surgeries but I took the fights anyway, and I’ve shown that I’m able to compete. A lot of athletes don’t compete with injuries, but I have. Those fights with Forrest were tight, and a completion of the trilogy should be the right way to end my career.”
Tito has had a number of injuries in his last years of fighting, most notably a nagging back and neck injury. He is still able to recover and fight, but wonders at what cost and for how much longer before a severe injury makes a decision for him. As he states he would rather go out on his terms.
“It’s my decision, I want to leave on my own terms. I haven’t been injured badly, I’ve got my head on my shoulders, I agreed the fight and I go out on my terms. I’ve got my clothing company, my supplement line Punishment Nutrition, it’s business to me. I’m not going to be able to fight for the rest of my life and I want to leave on my terms.”
During his UFC fighting career Tito has been involved in one other trilogy against Ken Shamrock, another trilogy that was set to happen but never materialized was against current UFC Vice President of Business Development Chuck Liddell. Tito states that the current battle against Forest Griffin ranks above all other rematches.
“This one ranks right at the top. This is over Chuck Liddell or Ken Shamrock because this is my last fight,” Ortiz said. “We’ve both done a lot for this sport and if I’m going to end things it deserves to be Forrest I do it against.”
“I may have another one… you never know,” Ortiz said of extending his UFC stay. “But I’ve got a lot of options. I’ve seen Brock Lesnar go back to the WWE, that’s something I may entertain, do some ‘theatrical entertainment’ as they call it.
This could be a lucrative move for the Huntington Beach bad boy, Brock is known to make quite a lot of money fighting for the WWE. Tito would fit right into the WWE with his self-promoting and bad boy attitude. Tito and Brock did not meet in the UFC but just might in the WWE, could make for a very interesting event.
Either way Tito has a lot going on and will certainly find a place out of the Octagon where he will certainly be missed by the fans.
Check out page 2 for a video of Tito talking about a move to wrestling yet again.
(quotes vie ESPN.CO.UK)