The UFC has located a replacement to take on Tito Ortiz at UFC 106, and it appears that it will be a former foe. President Dana White has confirmed “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” will now be making his Octagon return against “The Ultimate Fighter 1” winner Forrest Griffin.
Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports was informed by White that Griffin would be subbing in for the injured Mark Coleman on November 21st.
Ortiz took a razor-thin split decision in their initial clash at UFC 59 back in 2006. He went on to dominate Ken Shamrock in back-to-back bouts after that, however most would agree that the Griffin scrap was the last significant W in his illustrious career.
The controversial wrestler was last seen dropping a unanimous decision to current 205-pound king Lyoto Machida at UFC 84 in May 2008. It was believed to be his last with the only organization he had ever called home.
With the 34-year-old has been a massive pain in White’s ass over the years, and the fact that he’s gone 0-2-1 over his last three contests, it was easy to see why the UFC wanted to cut ties.
However, Ortiz is still one of MMA’s most polarizing figures, which equates to dollars. That drawing power was enough for the two to bury the hatchet and extend their partnership for a few more years.
Coleman tore the MCL in his knee a couple days back and that is what opened the door for his Xtreme Couture teammate to get a mulligan against Ortiz.
Griffin was last seen sprinting to his locker room after he was knocked unconscious by UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva with the most vicious and devastating walking-away jab the Octagon has ever witnessed.
Since that humiliating loss at UFC 101 in August, Griffin has stayed below the MMA radar. He recently took a break from training to tie the knot to his long-time girlfriend, so things aren’t all bad for the popular slugger.
However, Forrest does need a win pretty badly, especially if you take into account he’s gone a mundane 2-2 over his last four outings.
The light heavyweight scrap will serve as the co-main event of the pay-per-view broadcast, which will be headlined by UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar defending his title against Shane Carwin.
Here are the fighters rumored to be competing inside the Mandalay Bay Event Center in Las Vegas, Nevada:
Jason Dent vs. George Sotiropoulos
Marcus Davis vs. Ben Saunders
Phil Baroni vs. Amir Sadollah
Dustin Hazelett vs. Karo Parisyan
Ricardo Almeida vs. Jon Fitch
Luiz Cane vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Forrest Griffin vs. Tito Ortiz
Shane Carwin vs. Brock Lesnar (UFC Heavyweight Champion)