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03-14-2010, 01:28 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
| | MMAWeekly is Sticking by their story: Liddell vs. Franklin on tap for UFC115
......read the last three paragraphs.
A long anticipated second rematch between former UFC light heavyweight champions and “The Ultimate Fighter Season 12” coaches Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz is not going to happen, at least, not yet. |
Liddell (21-7) is still coming off of a yearlong layoff, but will instead face former middleweight champion Rich Franklin. The bout is to be featured at UFC 115 on June 12.
The possibility of the bout was first reported by Fighters Only for a date in April, but multiple MMAWeekly.com sources confirmed the bout has been agreed to for the Vancouver event.
Liddell and Ortiz have a long history. They have met twice before with Liddell winning by knockout both times.
Liddell is, however, coming off of a stretch of losing four of his five most recent bouts, three of those by way of knockout.
Following Liddell’s last bout, UFC president Dana White called for his friend to hang up the gloves.
He instead took some time off from the fight game, including a stint on ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars.” Liddell consistently said that he still felt like he wanted to fight, that the fire to compete hadn’t yet gone out.
He’s not getting an easy return bout. Franklin (26-5) has had his own troubles lately. He is 5-4 in his most recent bouts, including losing his title to current middleweight champion Anderson Silva. He is 2-2 since transitioning back to his old weight class of light heavyweight, including a victory over Wanderlei Silva and most recently losing to Vitor Belfort in catchweight bouts.
There had been some speculation about Vancouver being unprepared for a June 12 date, but Marc Ratner, UFC Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, recently told MMAWeekly.com that the event was “still on track.”
There has been no word yet as to what is next for Tito Ortiz following his current coaching stint on “The Ultimate Fighter.”
UFC president Dana White Saturday afternoon refuted MMAWeekly.com and several other respected news outlets’ reports, tweeting that the Liddell vs. Franklin match-up was not true, saying they would instead match Franklin up with Randy Couture.
Ortiz’s posts on Twitter during filming were sometimes rather critique however, saying things like, “If things couldn't get worse. They just did!” “Thinking that life couldn't get any harder? It just did! Another challenge that god has given me! WOW.” and “Many things that challenge us in lives will make us stronger. One thing I can say is don’t ever quit. Im strong because of my family and fan(s)!!”
MMAWeekly.com still stands by it sources, believing that White’s response may be tied to Liddell’s participation on “The Ultimate Fighter.” Then again, things change rapidly in mixed martial arts, so we’ll keep you posted as the story develops.
(UPDATED 4:15 p.m. PT, March 13 – Added Dana White’s Twitter response and Tito Ortiz’s comments from Twitter.)
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