Affliction Entertainment announced that former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz will be attending their press conference on Wednesday in Los Angeles, California. MMA’s most sought after free agent is still in search of a new employer since his final fight with the UFC in May.
Other than stating that Ortiz will be present, Affliction did not mention the capacity, if any, that Ortiz will serve at the press conference. It is possible that he could just be Affliction’s guest.
Earlier last month, Ortiz stated that he was close to signing with an organization, and even though he has been recovering from an October back surgery, he intended to fight again come summer of 2009.
“It’s either going to be with the UFC or it’s going to be with Affliction, but guaranteed, you guys will see me fight — no matter what — by July,” stated Ortiz.
Ortiz made the statement as EliteXC was on the heels of announcing their financial troubles. Many thought that was going to be Ortiz’ new stomping grounds, however there is no way the financially plagued company would be able to afford a fighter of Ortiz’ caliber now – leaving Affliction as Ortiz’ only choice if he intends to fight in the U.S.
Ortiz has clearly burned all of his bridges with the UFC, however he has a great relationship with Affliction, and was seen sitting front row with its executive vice president and friend, Donald Trump, at the promotion’s only MMA event in July.
Ortiz, who will be 34-years of age come January, is still a polarizing figure in the sport, and remains one of its most popular fighters. However, he has posted two losses and a draw in his last three MMA bouts, and it can be argued that he hasn’t won a significant fight in over three years.