Former UFC light heavyweight champ Tito Ortiz announced via Twitter that the final fight of his career would come via a trilogy bout against fellow former 205-pound champ Forrest Griffin at UFC 148 on July 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
“I just turned 37 years old. I’ve been in the game for 15 years and competing only with the UFC. I know it’s time for me to kind of hang ‘em up,” Ortiz told MMAjunkie.com Radio last month.
“We have a history. I won the first won, they gave Forrest the second one, and fans want to see the third one. We’d put on a great match,” continued Ortiz, who since making his debut at UFC 13 in 1997 has fought in 26 UFC bouts—the most fights in the organization’s history.
While Ortiz was a major player in helping MMA’s largest promotion reaching unparalleled heights, “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” has been on a downward slope in losing five of his last six matches. After pulling off an upset against Ryan Bader at UFC 132 last summer, Ortiz was TKO’d in losses to Rashad Evans and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.
But Ortiz (16-10-1) and Griffin (18-7) both have a score to settle in their rubber match. Ortiz took the first meeting via split decision at UFC 59 in April 2006 in a bout that received Fight of the Year honors. The 32-year-old Griffin returned the favor via split decision at UFC 106 in 2009.
UFC 148 is headlined by another trilogy bout as The Ultimate Fighter 15 coaches Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber face off for the bantamweight title. The event also features middleweight bouts between Rich Franklin and Cung Le and Michael Bisping vs. Tim Boetsch.