Big fights. Those seem to be the buzz words coming out of the UFC these days. Brock Lesnar vs. Randy Couture. Georges St. Pierre vs. BJ Penn. Chuck Liddell vs. Anderson Silva. All big fights the UFC has put together recently, well, except the last one.
Liddell vs Silva was certainly the big rumor going around for UFC 95, however, it appears the UFC is going to move in a different direction. According to The Sun, Anderson is still going to headline UFC 95 but it’s no longer looking like it will be against Chuck Liddell. Instead, it’s said that the UFC is considering matching Silva up against one of the losers from the major UFC 92 light heavyweights bouts—Forrest Griffin vs Rashad Evans & Wanderlei Silva vs Rampage Jackson.
As for Liddell, don’t worry, it looks like big things are in store for him. For as long as I can remember, Chuck’s been asked about moving up to heavyweight , and now, it looks like it may finally be happening. His first opponent? Randy Couture…possibly. The potential match-up was first reported by Bloody Elbow late yesterday, and today, The Sun is also reporting the possibility for Chuck Liddell vs. Randy Couture IV on June 13 for the UFC’s first trip to Germany. It’s believed the winner could get a title shot late next year.
But UFC officials have instead offered The Iceman a fourth clash against veteran star Randy Couture, 45, set to take place on June 13 in Cologne, Germany.
But their next fight will be a heavyweight encounter which would see the winner thrust right into the title picture.
Couture speaks fluent German which makes him the obvious choice to headline the event in Cologne and a rematch with Liddell sets up huge marketing opportunities for the UFC.
Late yesterday, Zach Arnold asked the question, is there any interest for Liddell vs Couture IV? That’s a good question. When Randy first re-signed with the UFC, there was talk of this fight being a possibility if Randy were to lose to Brock. If I remember correctly, there seemed to be some interest.
Personally though, I’m just not feeling it. It was one of the great trilogies of this sport, and I’m just not sure, outside of making a big fight just to make a big fight, that there’s really a need for it. At the time of their first three encounters, it just seemed natural for those fights to take place, well, at least considering Tito’s unwillingness to fight Chuck, which led to their first go around. Perhaps, I’m in the minority on this, but putting them together for a fourth time, now, just feels too manufactured, and it’s probably pretty safe to say neither fighter is the fighter they were when those fights took place. It isn’t like Wandy and Rampage where one of them has significantly evolved their game since they last fought. What happens if Randy wins? Are we going to have to see Randy vs Chuck V? I don’t know, I’m sure there’s a lot of you that feel differently about it, but I bet there’s also a lot of you that feel the same way I do, and because of that I’m just not sold that it would be as big as the UFC probably thinks. Still, they really can’t go wrong with it either, and there’s probably not a better way to make a first impression in Germany.
That said, I am excited about Chuck moving to heavyweight if that’s what happens. I don’t see him ever holding the light heavyweight belt again, but the UFC heavyweight division just might be thin enough for it to happen. I’ve already wrote about how I’d like to see Liddell fight Brock Lesnar. That fight all of a sudden becomes a possibility with the move, and if I’m betting man, I’d be putting my money down on the UFC doing everything in its power to make that fight happen as soon as they can. Financially speaking, I just don’t think there’s a bigger fight the UFC could make than Liddell vs Lesnar, especially if it was for a title.
On a quick side note, The Sun is also reporting that Dan Hardy will be on the UFC 95 card, possibly against Karo Parisyan or Diego Sanchez.