Chuck Liddell reveals the time he threatened to go to Tito Ortiz’s house and ‘beat you in your f****** living room’
Chuck Liddell always preferred handling his business inside the cage.
The UFC Hall of Famer earned a reputation as one of the nastiest knockout artists in the history of the sport, but he never really found the need to settle any beefs with past rivals in a public setting. After sitting just a few feet away from watching Sean Strickland launch himself at Dricus du Plessis at UFC 296, the former light heavyweight champion recounted the closest he came to a street fight while he was still in the middle of his fight career.
To exactly nobody’s surprise, Liddell’s grudge was against Tito Ortiz after the always outspoken “Huntington Beach Bad Boy” made some ill-fated comments during a radio interview while promoting one of his fights.
“Tito, when he was fighting Vitor Belfort, was doing a radio interview in San Diego and said, ‘I don’t date white trash b****** like Chuck,’” Liddell relayed on the Street Fight podcast. “A bunch of guys called me up and they’re like, ‘What’s up with this?’ So I wasn’t real happy with him.”
Liddell said he attended the card where Ortiz defeated Belfort at UFC 51. The two longtime rivals were then slated to appear at a post-fight party, where a run-in between them was almost inevitable.
The bad blood between the UFC legends was so palpable that it looked as if a full on brawl might break out between the fighters and their friends. So, in an effort to keep the peace, Liddell revealed that he was approached about settling his grudge against Ortiz with a conversation rather than letting his fists go flying.
That’s when Liddell says he laid down an ultimatum before Ortiz, especially when it came to any conversation regarding his personal relationships.
“There’s an afterparty and John Huntington was promoting it, a friend of ours,” Liddell explained. “He comes up to me and he’s like, ‘Hey bro, you’ve got to squash this stuff with Tito, because your guys are going to fight his guys. I don’t need any trouble in here. I don’t need any problems. Please squash this.’ I said, ‘Yeah, no problem.’ I went over, they got Tito to come over, and actually Vin Diesel was there too, he was negotiating I guess. He came up and was trying to get us to talk and be cool.
“I’m like, ‘Tito, first off, this is my girlfriend — apologize. Second, you ever talk about my family and friends on a radio interview again, I know where you live and I’ll come beat you in your f****** living room. You understand that?’”
Prior to their heated rivalry, Liddell counted Ortiz as a training partner and friend, which meant they knew each other pretty well. In other words, Ortiz absolutely understood that Liddell was serious while laying down his challenge.
Of course, Liddell said Ortiz’s explanation about the whole situation was also rather dumb, but that’s a conversation for a different day.
“[Tito said,] ‘No man, I got it, I’m sorry, I wasn’t talking about her, I was talking about Juliette Lewis,’” Liddell said. “Us Magazine had said I was dating Juliette Lewis for some reason. I’m like, ‘She’s not white trash, bro. She plays characters that are in movies, idiot.’
“I said, ‘OK, we’re cool, I’m not going to cause any trouble.’ He knew from when we trained before, we trained together, he heard stories about me — I’m serious.”
That incident didn’t lead to an outside-the-cage altercation, but it certainly didn’t settle the long simmering rivalry between them. They met for the second time in the UFC less than two years later, with Liddell scoring a third-round knockout over Ortiz to defend his light heavyweight title for the fourth consecutive time.