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CSAC has bizarre take on Chuck Liddell’s MMA comeback — ‘You almost want to treat this as a debut’

17th Annual Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Chuck Liddell will (almost) be making his mixed martial arts (MMA) debut this November inside The Forum in Inglewood, Calif., thanks to the new fighter-friendly promotion started by Golden Boy promoter and former boxing champion Oscar De La Hoya.

The fight takes place less than a month before “The Iceman” turns 49.

But that’s okay with California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) Executive Director Andy Foster, who rubber stamped Liddell’s upcoming bout against Tito Ortiz, partly because the former UFC light heavyweight champion has enjoyed an eight-year layoff, but mostly because he’s an experienced martial artist.

“He hasn’t fought in a long time,” Foster told MMA Fighting. “Chuck is still a good athlete. How is this not a competitive match? I think it is competitive. It was competitive the first two times. I don’t see the problem of letting two older fighters fight each other. You almost want to treat this as a debut, because of the long layoff but of course, it’s not a debut. Mr. Liddell is very experienced. He’s not active, but he’s very experienced and he’s still a martial artist.”

Liddell (21-8) has not seen the inside of a cage since getting slept by the since-retired Rich Franklin at UFC 115 back in June 2010. Going down in flames against “Ace” marked the third straight knockout loss for the UFC Hall of Famer.

But one thing he does have, is two previous wins over “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy.”

Ortiz (19-12-1), who joined “The Iceman” in the UFC’s hallowed hall, tried to resurrect his championship title reign for Bellator MMA, but came up short against then-champion Liam McGeary. The 43 year-old light heavyweight was last seen submitting Chael Sonnen back in 2017, inside the same building where he’s expected to fight Liddell.

For much more on their upcoming showdown click here.

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