Tito Ortiz is claiming that referee Mario Yamasaki stopped his bout with Chuck Liddell at UFC 66 too early, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Here's a snip:
"This was the biggest fight in history, and I think it was stopped a little prematurely. I'm not a guy who cries or makes excuses. But John McCarthy is the best referee we have and this was the biggest fight and I don't understand why he didn't do this fight. He would have let the fight go a little longer, I believe. If I knew (Yamasaki) was going to stop it, I would have fought a little harder to get out at that point."
Fought harder? Boo-hoo.
I don't understand the reason Ortiz needs a reason to fight harder, considering that it was the "biggest fight in history." I'm not taking anything away from Tito, because he's a great fighter and can beat my ass six ways to Sunday.
But, these comments are ridiculous.
He also mentions, more or less, that Liddell has got his number.
Here's another snip:
"Honestly, I think the situation with me (losing to Liddell) is a confidence issue. It's something I can fix, which is the most important thing. I can make changes and improvements."
Interesting admission from "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy," which makes me think that this fight was over before the bell rang.
Ortiz, who was in Las Vegas attending a "surprise" party to mark his 32nd birthday, goes on to say:
"The only thing I promise is that I'm going to get better as a fighter and get my title back. That's what is motivating me, to get that title back for my fans."
Maybe it'll also motivate him to fighter harder all the time.