Ahead of his anticipated, Saturday night trilogy fight with Chuck Liddell, Tito Ortiz has hinted that he is interested in becoming a fight promoter in the near future.
Speaking to MMA Fighting after the final pre-fight press conference for his rematch with Liddell, Ortiz explained why he’s interested in trying his hand at fight promotion.
“I think it really comes down to helping fighters mature and helping fighters build their foundation and build their character,” he said.
Building marketable fighters with characters that are easy for fans to digest is something Tito Ortiz has done in the past, not only in terms of his own career, but apparently Chuck Liddell’s too.
“I’ve done it with myself, I had a lot of help with Chuck,” he said. “All of the sudden he had icicles on his pants. You think that was his idea? Come on dude.”
“Who had the first fighter cards? Me and Chuck Liddell. Hmm I wonder who thought about that one.”
If Tito Ortiz does venture into the world of fight promotion, he says his goal is to create more fighters like himself, Liddell, Randy Couture, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson — even Conor McGregor.
“It’s just one of things where if we can build and mold fighters the right way, we can make Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddell, Randy Couture, Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson, Jason ‘Mayhem’ Miller, Phil ‘The New York Badass’ Baroni,” he explained. “Those guys are all my friends. We helped make that happen. Of course you’ve got to win fights and you’ve got to make a character behind yourself, but that’s what makes other guys become characters.
“You look at Conor McGregor, one of the best ever — I will give him, hands down, he is the best trash talker ever aside from Muhammad Ali — that kid is on fire,” Ortiz continued. “That kid knows what he’s doing. [I want to] build guys like that and give back to them a piece of the revenue. Not only just the pay-per-view, but merchandise. Not only the merchandising, but the gate. Not only the gate but sponsorships, where they’re not only having one sponsor — Reebok — it is is whatever sponsor they choose. They’re able to pick their own personality, their own character.
“I think that’s really important, being a promoter, to help fighters grow up and be the best in the world.”
Do you think Tito Ortiz would be a good fight promoter?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 11/21/2018.