If Chuck Liddell is ready to retire, you wouldn’t know it by an interview he gave earlier today to promote his third appearance on Dancing With The Stars set to air tonight on ABC.
As Chuck told his friends on Good Day LA, he feels he still has something left.
“It’s not completely up to [Dana]. We’re going to have a talk and we’re going to argue about it. We’ll figure it out. I still think I have something left. If he can convince me I don’t, maybe I’ll retire. And if he can’t, maybe I can convince him that I’ve still got something left and I want to fight.”
Even though Dana has repeatedly said he puts his friend’s health and safety before his company’s ability to profit off him, it’s hard to ignore the impact Chuck can still make financially. As MDS points out, his hefty fanbase may even be growing as he dances on network television in front of 16-17 million people each week (crazy to think more people have probably seen him dance than fight). It’s not inconceivable to think he may even be a bigger draw now than he’s ever been.
Furthermore, Sam Caplan noted last week that the UFC now has the perfect opponent for Chuck Liddell’s return — Kimbo Slice. Don’t laugh, it’s really not that crazy when you think about it. Since Chuck’s skills have diminished and everybody is so impressed with Kimbo’s progress (though we’ve yet to see it), maybe it’s not quite the mismatch we thought it was when these two were having a mini war of words in the media last year. Okay, well even if it is, you can’t deny how big it would be in light of Kimbo’s repackaging on TUF and Chuck’s eloquent introduction to a massive mainstream audience. The UFC would be hard pressed to find a match-up not involving Brock Lesnar and a rhinoceros that would sell as well as Liddell vs. Kimbo.
That proposition would be awfully tempting for someone who can’t legally tell Chuck Liddell he can’t fight.