There was a lot of animosity leading up to Chael Sonnen vs Tito Ortiz at Bellator 170. Chael seemed to really ignite a fire in Ortiz. Sonnen likes to talk to sell fights, but Ortiz seemed genuinely impacted on a personal level by Chael’s trash talk, and he took that fire into the cage with him.
Chael said he felt like a deer in headlights after a long break from MMA, and he got a bit scrambled, and tried to go for the early choke again like he landed against Shogun Hua in his defining victory. It didn’t work this time, and he put himself in a bad position and Ortiz was able to capitalize.
Chael also said part of the reason he went for Tito’s neck is because Tito has a notoriously bad neck, has had 3 neck surgeries. In the post presser, Tito said that his neck was really hurting, but nothing was going to stop him from getting the win tonight.
Immediately after Chael Sonnen tapped to Tito Ortiz’ choke, alarms started going off. On the one hand, it was a tight grip, but it also didn’t look like Chael was really trying to fight the hands or to get out of it. In the post-fight presser, he said he was working on the ankles. You’ve got Tito Ortiz’s arm wrapped around your face, cranking and trying to break your jaw, and you’re worried about ankles?
The fact that Chael has a history of getting in trouble for shady real estate dealings makes it harder for people to give him the benefit of the doubt in a situation like this.
Many have weighed in that the choke shouldn’t have been too hard to escape, but have they ever had Tito’s pythons cranked around their face?
Experts like former title contender Dan Hardy have come out and said they strongly believe this fight was a fix. Numerous fans online have said similar things.
Here’s what Dan Hardy had to say (He’s not holding back AT ALL.):