“I hope Wanderlei (Silva) knocks him out,” Ortiz told MMAjunkie Radio today when asked to pick a favorite in the Bellator 180 pay-per-view headliner between Sonnen and longtime rival Wanderlei Silva on June 24 at Madison Square Garden. “That’s what I think will happen. Chael will try to go for the takedown, Wanderlei will stuff the takedown, and Wanderlei’s going to put some hands on him. I hope that’s the way it happens.”
Ortiz (19-12-1 MMA, 3-1 BMMA) theoretically got the last word when he beat Sonnen (29-15-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) in his retirement fight at Bellator 170. But he hasn’t quite let go of what the sharp-tongued Sonnen said before the fight.
Sonnen put his promotional skills to full use attacking Ortiz at press conferences, at one point bringing into the fray the UFC Hall of Famer’s ex-wife, former porn star Jenna Jameson. After losing the fight, though, he changed his tune and gave Ortiz his due at the press conference.
Where he fell short, according to Ortiz, was expressing remorse for what he’d said in the buildup.
“He came to my dressing room (after the fight), and he goes, ‘Are we cool?’ And I go, ‘Yeah, we’re cool – only if you go out in public and apologize to me like you went out in public and disrespected me,’” Ortiz said. “If you can’t do that, then we’re not cool. Then after the press conference, right before it was over, I looked over at him and said, ‘Chael, is that all you have to say?’ And he goes, ‘Uh, happy birthday?’”
So apparently Ortiz isn’t ready to let bygones be bygones. But if he’s looking for Sonnen to get knocked out, the good news is that Silva (35-12-1 MMA, 0-0- BMMA) feels the same way.
The grudge between “The Axe Murderer” and Sonnen stretches back even further, with Silva and Sonnen once fighting on the set of “The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3.” Their career went off the rails after both flunked out of a season-ending fight at UFC 175 due to drug testing issues. Eventually, though, they wound up under the Bellator banner, and they’ll get a chance to sort things out.
Depending on what happens at “Bellator NYC,” Silva might resolve his issues with Sonnen. Or, like, Ortiz, he might just hold a grudge.