Affliction held their press conference today with “special guest” Tito Ortiz. There was quite a bit of speculation over the past two days of whether Tito had actually signed with Affliction.
Well, Tito may have signed with Affliction, but not to fight. Instead, it was announced that Tito will be doing the one thing that some might argue he does better than fighting—talking.
The sport’s most intriguing free agent announced he will take the mic for Affliction Entertainment in its sophomore event on Jan. 24 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.
Tito Ortiz will join play-by-play announcer Sean Wheelock and color commentator Jimmy Smith to call the action at “Day of Reckoning,” which features a bout between world-ranked heavyweights Fedor Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski. The Wheelock-Smith team currently calls the shots for M-1 Global, which airs a weekly show on HDNet and will be collaborating with Affliction on the Jan. 24 event.
“This has nothing to do with me fighting for Affliction,” said Ortiz at a press conference on Wednesday for the pending event. “I’ve been fighting for 11 years, so I think I know a thing or two about fighting.”
Great…just what I wanted to hear more of…Tito Ortiz talking.
If this news leaves you turned off as well, you at least have options come Jan. 24. If you like boxing, Affliction’s “partner” Golden Boy Promotions is putting on the big boxing match a few miles down the road. If boxing’s not your thing, and you’re one of the few people left on the planet who hasn’t seen Brock Lesnar put his bowling ball for a fist through Randy Couture’s cranium yet, the UFC will be counter-programming Affliction’s event with a replay of UFC 91 on Spike TV.
Options don’t seem to have Affliction worried though. Tom Atencio recently said he doesn’t think you like boxing enough for their “partner” to hurt them, and the UFC, well, Michael D. Cohen doesn’t even consider what they’re doing to be counter-programming.
I do not consider this act to be an act of counter-programming by the UFC. The UFC regularly features on Spike stories of upcoming fights (such as the St. Pierre vs Penn II fight). On the same basis, the UFC Unleashed program airs regularly at this time. Lastly, the notion that showing a rerun of the Couture vs. Lesnar fight could impact Trump’s Affliction “Day Of Reckoning” event is absurd. I say this for two (2) reasons: First, we all know the result of the fight which was considered by many fans and pundits mediocre at best. Secondly, no fan of the sport, whether a die hard fan or casual, would miss Affliction’s stacked fight card to watch this repeat.
Well, I’ll still be tuning into Affliction on Jan. 24. Not even Tito Ortiz’s trap will keep me from watching Fedor fight Andrei Arlovski, but hey, if watching the world’s best heavyweight compete against one of the world’s top five heavyweights isn’t your thing, you can always watch “The Next Big Thing” become the next big thing…again.