Posted 12/17/07 8:56:00PM
Adam Wagner (MMAmania.com): You’ll be fighting Lyoto Machida at UFC 84 on May 24 for your last contracted fight in the UFC. Machida’s undefeated and is a noted counter striker. How have you been preparing for this fight, particular in preparation for his style?
Tito Ortiz: I really just think about being a great champ, you know. I don’t think Machida’s ever fought anyone like me — someone who’s aggressive, someone who pushes the pace, and I’m going to be that person.
He’s had some tough guys that he’s fought, but it was a B.J. Penn at 175 pounds or a Rich Franklin who was a 185 pounder who was maybe 202, 203. So when he has someone on him who’s 220 fight time — I mean, I’ll make weight at 205 without a problem at all, you know, coming from a wrestling background, but I’ll be 220 fight time — so let’s see if he can handle a bigger man on top of him. Let’s see if he can be as elusive as he has in his fights.
I have a lot of guys up here who are great wrestlers, great strikers — southpaw guys too — who really mimic what Machida’s fight style is — elusive, always circling out, always running away. I’m going to push the pace, man, like all my fights. I bring the fight when it’s fight time. That’s why so many fans watch pay-per-view (PPV) of Tito Ortiz, because they want to see a fight, and I bring the fight every time I fight.