Tito Ortiz means business heading into his boxing match with fellow UFC legend Anderson Silva tomorrow night (Sat., Sept. 11, 2021) live on FITE TV pay-per-view (PPV) from inside Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla., and that includes stifling the movement and unorthodox strikes of “Spider.”
Ortiz, who is making his first combat appearance since a submission win over Alberto Del Rio back in Dec. 2019, has never been known for his striking. He has always relied on his wrestling to control opponents inside of the cage, but Saturday night “Huntington Beach Bad Boy” will have to let his hands do all the talking.
“I’m no boxer,” Ortiz said during Thursday’s pre-fight press conference (replay HERE). “I’m gonna come here, I’m gonna fight, I’m gonna try to knock him out. That’s my job. I’m gonna come in, I’m gonna punch him through his face. I’ve gotta touch him and I’ve got to touch him with numbers.
“He’s fast, he’s elusive, he moves well, but once again, me at 195, I’m gonna be a lot faster than I was at 205. A 10-pound difference, that makes a huge difference because I don’t have the muscle size I did when I was at 205. But once again, I’m here to kick ass, that’s my job. I’m here to entertain, that’s my job. I’ve been doing it for 24 years, I’m not stopping on Saturday night.”
Despite being a 46-year-old veteran coming off a two-year layoff Ortiz seems to be in pretty good shape for his professional boxing debut. Ortiz will be fighting an uphill battle when he enters the ring across from Silva, but if he can show up and land his punches he may be able to pull off the upset.
“[This is] the first time in the last eight years that I’ve been able to do four miles a day for the last five weeks now, seven days a week,” Ortiz said. “I’ve been very focused on this fight. I’m getting to fight one of the best mixed martial artists to ever grace the octagon, Anderson Silva. To get down to 195 pounds is gonna be a challenge, but I take challenges in stride, every single competition I’ve always competed against.
“For this one, I’m not gonna change. I know what I need to do to beat Anderson. He’s 2-1 in boxing, I’m 0-0, but I just want to make a statement. I want to make sure that I make a statement on his face on Saturday night and do what I do best and punish people.”
All of that said, Ortiz isn’t going up against a conventional boxer who he can gameplan for. Silva is as unorthodox as they come, which “Spider” showed in his recent upset win over former boxing champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. this past June. Ortiz will have to push through some pretty funky attacks to find a home for his own offense, but he seems ready to do whatever it takes.
“Anderson’s gonna do his little magic, Wing Chun, Bruce Lee bullsh*t,” said Ortiz. “I’m gonna come in to fight.”