Following Bellator Appearance, Tito Ortiz Makes Return to TNA Wrestling

John HeinisSenior Analyst IAugust 2, 2013

Just one day after shocking the world with the announcement that he was coming out of retirement to fight Quinton Jackson for the Bellator banner, Tito Ortiz appeared on Total Nonstop Action Wrestling last night. 

On the weekly pro-wrestling program, The Main Event Mafia, which recently added "Rampage" to their faction, hyped up a five-on-five tag team between themselves and Aces and Eights on August 15 in Norfolk, Virginia. 

Kurt Angle, a member of The Main Event Mafia, made the high-stakes bet that whoever gets pinned in the matchup will be banned from TNA for life. 

After a brief scrap inside the ring, Aces and Eights accepted and as the segment appeared ready to draw a conclusion, the former "Huntington Beach Bad Boy" made an impromptu appearance. 

Ortiz didn't say or do much, he simply walked toward the end of the entrance ramp to generic music and stood with his arm folded before the show concluded. 

As the video clip shows, the crowd gave Ortiz a very tepid response at best.

All the way back in 2005, Ortiz served as a special guest referee for TNA, as Jeff Jarrett and AJ Styles competed for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. 

Thursday marked just the second time the 38-year-old former UFC light heavyweight champ stepped inside the wrestling ring during a major broadcast.

When former Strikeforce titleholder Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal signed with Bellator in May, his deal was considered unprecedented within the industry, since it allowed him to also compete with TNA (via Pro Wrestling Torch). 

However, following the signing of Rampage in June and Ortiz this week, it looks like contracts that promote a crossover between pro wrestling and MMA are becoming common practice.

TNA Wrestling runs on the Spike TV network, as does the Bellator Fighting Championships.

Is it a good idea to hype up the Rampage-Ortiz Bellator PPV fight, scheduled for November 2, by having the two competitors feud as part of a TNA Wrestling storyline?  


John Heinis is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA Editor for