Over the last few weeks, there have been rampant rumors surrounding a potential Bellator clash between Chael Sonnen and retired MMA legend Chuck Liddell. While Bellator President Scott Coker recently made an effort to deflate these rumors, Sonnen has recently injected life back into them.
Speaking on a recent episode of his You’re Welcome Podcast, the Bellator star claimed that he’s prepared to fight Liddell right now and that Liddell has actually been offered a fight by Bellator.
“I got called out on TMZ – I don’t know if it’s a call out but I’m using that term – by Chuck Liddell,” Sonnen began (h/t MMAFighting.com). “He said, ‘Chael Sonnen would be a perfect warm up fight’ for his comeback. TMZ got ahold of me to respond. I never miss big media opportunities and TMZ is huge but this one I just sat it out. First time ever I’ve told TMZ I’m gonna pass on the interview because I didn’t know what to say and I still don’t, other than the truth: I will fight you right now Chuck. This was my idea. I’m the one that suggested you come in on my legends ass-whipping tour and be my crowning moment. That’s the truth. Chuck does not have a contract with any organization. Bellator would sign him and would make that fight and did sit down with him and told him that but he didn’t sign. Instead he went back to TMZ and pretended he wanted the fight.
“No problem if he’s using that as a negotiation tool,” Sonnen continued. “That is part of how the game is played and if enough people wanted to see it, it would be an effective tool. That’s kind of your measuring stick. When he can get publicity like TMZ, that’s a good sign for him but the bottom line is, he doesn’t have a contract. They offered him the fight and in fact, they offered it to him twice, in person. . . He didn’t take it.”
“Chuck, the answer is yes. You’re the one that said no, you’re the one that said no a second time, you’re the one that’s pretending you want the fight. I’m fine with all of it but I don’t know what his endgame is. It’s not like he’s got sponsors so he’s trying to keep them out there. Who’s gonna sponsor him, some rehab clinic? It’s Chuck Liddell. This isn’t 1994 when the guy had a little bit of glory to his name.”
Finally, Chael Sonnen concluded that, whether it’s Chuck Liddell or Fedor Emelianenko, his so-called ‘legends ass-kicking tour’ isn’t over yet.
“The likely suspects for me: throw Fedor in there, throw Chuck in there, that’s the one I thought it was gonna be. I would like to fight Chuck, but the air has been taken out of my ball on that. I don’t believe that is going to happen. Then you’ve got Tito in there. Let’s just see what happens. It would be a lot shorter of a list if I told you who I didn’t want to fight.”
Do you think Chael Sonnen and Chuck Liddell are going to fight in the Bellator cage?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 10/1/2017.