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Tito Ortiz Reflects On Stunning Win Over Ryan Bader at UFC 132

Yeah, this is the greatest time of my life right now. I look at the fact that I beat Ryan Bader, who was fifth in the world, top five in the world in all of MMA, at all levels, and I proved that I could still dominate. People had a lot of questions to see if I could still compete with a lot of people in the Light Heavyweight Division at this level. With the surgeries I’ve gone through, I’m very thankful for Dr. William Smith out of Las Vegas who gave me the surgery and be able to get in the cage and be able to compete at the level I know I can. Last night I proved it man, against Ryan Bader who was one of those things, I can look back. It was all the hard work and dedication of my team at the Punishment Athletic Center. Jason Perillo, Mike Giovani, and of course Ricardo Abreu. Those three guys put me through hell so I was prepared for this fight. Let me tell you, all my friends are happy and they’re able to look at each other and the people around them and be able to say “I told you so”. It’s nice to be back on top man. It’s a gratifying feeling.

— Tito Ortiz talking to SB Nation about his stunning win over Ryan Bader at UFC 132

My hat’s off to Tito Ortiz (never thought I’d say that). Hardly anyone, including myself, gave him a chance to beat Ryan Bader. In fact, no one really talked about how Tito could win, but rather what would he do after he lost, after the UFC released him. Would he go to Strikeforce? Bellator? ProElite? Or simply retire? Boy, did he show us.

So instead of wondering if he’ll retire, we’re now left asking who he’ll fight next. If you ask Tito, the list is short, but oozing with top tier talent.

Listen, I’ve fought top five guys in the world my whole career and I will continue to do that. Whoever they want me to fight, whenever they want me to fight, I’m gonna set up and I’m gonna compete against the top guys. I’ve always been competing against the top guys in the world. Rashad, Forrest Griffen, Shogun…whoever takes me to the Light Heavyweight title. I would love for it to be Jon “Bones” Jones but I know he and Rampage are fighting each other. I need one or two more wins. I just have to keep dominating guys in the Light Heavyweight division and keep doing my job and give the fans what they want and that’s a great fight. I want to fight top guys. The top guys are who I have to fight. I’m sick of guys trying to make a name off of me.

Interestingly, the one rematch he isn’t clamoring for is Lyoto Machida, and he just happens to be the only top tier light heavyweight who’s available right now. I’m not particularly interested in seeing that fight again and I doubt Tito wants to chase him around for another 15 minutes, but it will be interesting to see if the UFC considers it just based on timing. If the UFC wants to wait a month or two though, the better option would be to pit him against either the winner of the Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Rich Franklin fight or the Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Forrest Griffin fight. There’s also that grudge match with Matt Mitrione I wouldn’t mind seeing…

Image via Tracy Lee for Yahoo! Sports

  • http://twitter.com/Warriordave927 warriordave927

    I don’t think perish vs forest is that interesting,I know its a rubber match but maybe further down the road,ortiz vs Franklin or lil nog would be good but I don’t know I hadn’t thought about it but ortiz vs shogun is the most intriguing to me

    • ass

      i honestly dont think tito can hang with any of those guys but hey,i didnt think he had a shot in hell against bader so i guess you never know…but yea i agree shogun would be a great test,if he can get past him skys the limits…

      • http://twitter.com/Warriordave927 warriordave927

        I agree with you,I don’t think tito can hang either but in his head he deserves to be in the top 5 after one fight,so why not give him another tough fight and see if it wasn’t a fluke

  • Luckiethirteen

    Tito got lucky… Thats all it was. A lucky shot on the button and a lucky guillotine. Did you see Tito’s face when he locked on that choke? He was holding on for his life!

  • Mit689

    who is perish ?? 

    • http://twitter.com/Warriordave927 warriordave927

      my bad spell correct on my phone sometimes messes up what i write

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jay-Kinser/100000778912775 Jay Kinser

    JK’s first official MMA rankings as of 7/7/11, i ranked 130 fighters in 7 weight classes over 6 promotions http://wilymomoonshot.wordpress.com/2011/07/07/jks-official-mma-rankings-as-of-7811/

  • sandman

    Tito needs to hold off with the celebration. He beat Bader, who hasn’t beaten a reputable name  other than Nogueira (yes, I know he defeated Jardine, but who hasn’t?). It certainly doesn’t give him a top 5 status, despite what he wants to believe. He struggles with Griffin, and does anybody think Griffin will ever be holding the belt from here on out??? Tito needs to just go away….

    • Lopro

      damnit!! finally someone agrees!!! tito needs to keep on the training roll and quit talkin! he hasnt beat anyone near the REAL top 5!!!! well said, bro!!!
      Tito will be lucky to finish his career at 2-10 in his last 12 fights! the guy clearly sucks and doesnt have it anymore, bader was built up with way too much hype!!! a very lacking lt hvy wt division in UFC period!

  • Lopro

    i agree fellas!!! give tito all the fights he wants, cuz hes gonna get his ass kicked, any real top 5 would kill ortiz!! but a ufc top 10 would still beat him, he lost to matt hamill which is barely inside UFC’s lacking top 10, and he now thinks he should be back in top 5 ranks?? tito vs hamil 2, im not interested in it, but Tito clearly got his ass handed to him in that fight, put it on if Tito is that good!!! Tito, of course, will talk like he is in top form for that fight! give it to him!
    any top 5 will beat tito! if they dont they are equally on there way out too!
    we cant forget, BADER was a major build up on UFC’s part! he didnt have the experience and didnt beat top competition, but UFC had to push him up due to BS lacking light heavy weight division!
    i wanna see tito ortiz vs vladimir matzyushenko, i dont have the biggest hopes in Vldbut Tito has to beat these kinda guys to get back into the top 5!! im not sold yet that he will! 

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Fight Cards

Bellator 129: Bradley vs. Neer

Event Date: October 17, 2014
Broadcast: Spike TV

UFC 179: Aldo vs. Mendes 2

Event Date: October 25, 2014
Broadcast: Pay-per-view, Fox Sports 1, UFC Fight Pass

UFC Fight Night 55: Bisping vs. Rockhold

Event Date: November 8, 2014
Broadcast: UFC Fight Pass

UFC Fight Night 56: Shogun vs. Manuwa

Event Date: November 8, 2014
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Bellator 131: Tito vs. Bonnar

Event Date: November 15, 2014
Broadcast: Spike TV

UFC 180: Velasquez vs. Werdum

Event Date: November 15, 2014
Broadcast: Pay-per-view, Fox Sports 1, UFC Fight Pass