Debut: May 30, 1997 - UFC XIII.
At the UFC's 13th event, the world of mixed martial arts was introduced to a brash young wrestler named Tito Ortiz. Competing on the card that night for zero prize money(if you can fathom him doing ANYTHING for free), Ortiz would quickly dispose of an overmatched Wes Albitton in a preliminary bout before finding himself in the lightweight tournament finals against Guy Mezger, a much more experienced and established fighter who competed under the banner of the Ken Shamrock led Lion's Den.
After losing a controversial match against Mezger, Ortiz used the next 5 minutes to stalk around the ring, shaking his head, refusing to shake hands with anyone and uttering the word "muthafucka" in a variety of contexts. The Lion's Den hoisted Metzger to their shoulders and carried him around the octagon as Ortiz stormed from the cage, no doubt vowing revenge.
Ortiz would get his chance at UFC 18. Matched up with UFC 12 tournament winner Jerry Bohlander (another member of the famed Lion's Den), Tito would ground and pound his way to an impressive victory. Not satisfied with letting his in-ring work do the talking, Ortiz donned a shirt during the post-fight action that read, "I Just Fucked Your Ass". This set Ken Shamrock into a frenzy, resulting in him pointing his finger at Ortiz across the octagon and uttering vague threats to the Huntington Beach Bad Boy for the first of approximately 813 times over the next 10 years. Meanwhile, Jenna Jameson saw the shirt and thought that it would be a good working title for her next film.
The insulting tee-shirts became a tradition for Ortiz, including the classic "Gay Mezger is my bitch!" ensemble that Tito brought out after his re-match victory with Metzger at the following event. Unlike his bad boy predecessor Abbott however, Ortiz's work in the ring would soon overshadow his antics outside of it as T.O captured the UFC's light heavyweight title and reeled off 5 straight defenses - still a UFC record. His feud with Shamrock continued to boil, culminating (or so we all prayed) at UFC 40 where Ortiz would snatch victory via corner stoppage over the eldest Shamrock brother.
A contract dispute would keep Ortiz from actually fighting for a year, and back-to-back losses to Randy Couture and Chuck Liddell upon his return would mark the beginning of his slide from the top tier of the 205-lb. division. After beating up on Ken Shamrock twice more in 2006, he's fought only three times in the past 21 months, with a modest record of 0-2-1 during that span. His contact with the UFC recently expired following a loss to Lyoto Machida, rekindling a feud with Dana White that has become more public and personal with every passing day.
Now a free agent, Ortiz has managed to stay in the C-list celebrity spotlight with delusional claims about offers from rival promotions, and getting the aforementioned Jenna Jameson pregnant, all while taking the term 'sloppy seconds' to a whole new level in the process. But with a diminishing skill set and a host of young stars waiting in the wings, it may only be a matter of time before Ortiz is wiped completely out of the discussion of light heavyweight's all together... Just don't mention that to Ortiz.
If there's a certain MMA Villain that you'd like to see profiled, feel free to drop me a line whether it's in the comment section or via my profile.