Although Tito Ortiz faces a must-win situation against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at “UFC Fight Night 24,” the former light heavyweight champ isn’t worried where his next paycheck will be coming from. While accepting a fight with a fellow legend isn’t the best way to ensure victory, “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I probably could have gotten an easier fight, but I wanted to challenge myself,” Ortiz told MMAjunkie. “Do I fight someone who I’m supposed to beat, or do I fight someone that’s supposed to beat me?
“I like these terms better.”
Ortiz was last seen dropping a lopsided unanimous decision to protégé Matt Hamill at UFC 121 in October. The former champ holds a respectable 15-8-1 record overall, but has gone a disappointing 0-4-1 over his last five outings.
It could also be argued the 36-year-old hasn’t posted a significant win since taking a split decision from Vitor Belfort at UFC 51 way back in February of 2005. Regardless, Ortiz claims his scrap will not be his swan song – win, lose or draw.
“One-hundred percent,” Ortiz emphatically stated. “I’m healthy for once. People don’t understand the injuries that I’ve gone through. I’ve had some serious, serious surgeries, and I went through some serious pain over the last seven years, and I fought through it.”
“UFC Fight Night 24” takes place March 26th inside the Key Arena in Seattle, Washington.