During tonight’s Spike TV broadcast of “The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Finale,” UFC president Dana White announced that former light heavyweight champs Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz will coach opposite each other on “The Ultimate Fighter: Season 11.”
Spike TV will again broadcast the reality series, which is expected to premiere sometime in April 2010. White confirmed that this edition will feature a middleweight tournament.
Along with assigning Liddell and Ortiz their immediate responsibilities, White stated the two former champions will battle for a third time once the show wraps.
“The world knows there is no love lost between Tito and Chuck,” White stated. “These two guys will do whatever it takes to beat each other. Whether it’s fighting or checkers, Chuck wants to beat Tito, and Tito wants to beat Chuck.”
Liddell already owns a 2-0 record over “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy,” with their last clash coming at UFC 66 in December of 2006. That event remains the organization’s biggest pay-per-view earner, garnering more than 1 million buys.
Liddell hasn’t competed since getting knocked out by Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 97. It was his fourth loss in his last five contests.
Ortiz ended his 18-month hiatus from the Octagon at UFC 106 last month, however dropped a controversial split decision to Forrest Griffin. The controversial wrestler was on the mend after an October back surgery and a contract dispute with the only organization he’s ever called home.
Each have served as coaches on the show in the past. Liddell coached the inaugural season when he guided Griffin and Diego Sanchez to six-figure UFC deals. Ortiz coached season three where he spearheaded Michael Bisping and Kendall Grove’s runs to capture their respective tournaments.
“On season 11 of “The Ultimate Fighter,” we’ll see which legend can score the upper hand when it comes to coaching the next batch of rising stars,” White added.