Is Tito Ortiz UFC Bound?

Dan CareyCorrespondent IJuly 17, 2009

NEW YORK - JANUARY 20:  MMA fighter and former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz rings the NASDAQ opening bell at NASDAQ in Times Square on January 20, 2009 in New York City.  (Photo by Joe Corrigan/Getty Images)

We all know that Lorenzo Fertitta convinced top ten heavyweight Mirko Cro-Cop to remain committed to his UFC deal he made via text message prior to UFC 99 in June. Has Fertitta now brought back a certain "bad boy?"

Rumblings on the streets are saying that Fertitta has brought "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy" Tito Ortiz (15-6-1) back to the UFC.

According to their "Twitter" accounts, Tito said that he and UFC President Dana White have agreed to end one of the biggest MMA feuds that has spanned since Zuffa's purchase of the UFC from SEG in 2000. "Yeah, me and @danawhiteufc made up. I'm expecting to be inside the Octagon again soon. Thanks for the support guys - I appreciate it."

With the rumored signing of Ortiz, it makes you wonder if Rich Franklin has found his UFC 103 opponent. It could be interesting how White and UFC match maker Joe Silva decide to push Ortiz.

Ortiz, 34, has not fought since his unanimous decision loss to Lyoto Machida at UFC 84 last May. He was rumored to be close to signing a four-fight deal with UFC rival Strikeforce. A clause in his old UFC contract forbid Ortiz from signing with another organization until June, 2009.

Will Ortiz still be a big draw?

One can be sure that Dana White try and get Ortiz to the forefront of the UFC's stacked Light-Heavyweight to possibly set up huge drawing fights with the likes of: Rich Franklin, Shogun Rua, and rematches with Wanderlei Silva, Rashad Evans, Forrest Griffin and current 205 champion Machida.

Also, with Dana pushing hard to ink arguably the best fighter in MMA, Fedor Emelianenko, will Tito get his wish of a catchweight fight with the WAMMA heavyweight champion?

On the flip side, will White set an example of Ortiz and try and keep him from the top? Who knows? It would not be surprising due to White's ego and his past with "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy."

Whatever the result, Tito better get to his trash talk soon because a certain heavyweight is looking to take over Ortiz's roll as the UFC's bad boy.

Dan Carey is co-founder of Minnesota Sports Guys blog at and is a sports-humor writer at