Tito Ortiz knows that he does not have much time left in the sport of MMA, but he wants to end his career on a high note.
How much of a high note? He wants to retire as Bellator’s Light-Heavyweight Champion. Not a bad goal set by the “Huntington Beach Bad Boy.”
“You never know what times can tell, but right now that’s my goal,” Ortiz said to MMAFighting.com about retiring as Bellator’s 205 pound champion. “That’s what I want to do. I’m 40 years old. In 17 years, I’ve done everything in the sport. Retiring as the champion and being the only athlete to ever do that, I think goals like that are set in the mind. I want to make that happen. I’ve done so much in the sport that no athlete has ever done in mixed martial arts and I want to continue doing it.”
Ortiz began his career with a thirty-one second TKO over Wes Albritton at UFC 13 in 1997. Following a 4-1 opening to his career, Ortiz failed to win the UFC Light-Heavyweight title against Frank Shamrock in 1999. Shamrock later vacated the title which lead to Ortiz winning the belt via unanimous decision against Wanderlei Silva. 17 years, 5 UFC title defenses, a UFC Hall of Fame induction, and a successful stint in Bellator MMA later, Ortiz is still fighting and eyes bouts with the divison’s elite. As to what keeps Ortiz ticking this long after his debut? It’s his drive as a competitor.
“I love to compete,” Ortiz said. “I want to be a world champion and Bellator is gonna give me the opportunity after coming off of two wins. I’m thankful for it.”
While Ortiz awaits the result of this month’s Emanuel Newton versus Liam McGeary bout, he already has eyes set on his career after fighting.
“I have a couple more fights left in me,” Ortiz said. “I want to go on to bigger things. I have kids. I don’t want the chance of being paralyzed or something like that. I want to get my last two fights the best I can and that’s for a world title, get that world title, defend it and retire as the world champion.”
For news regarding Ortiz’s upcoming title bout, stay logged on to SciFighting.com