För närvarande befinner det sig 8 personer i UFC Hall of Fame. Vi har Randy Couture, Mark Coleman, Royce Gracie, Matt Hughes, Charles ”Mask” Lewis, Chuck Liddell, Dan Severn och Ken Shamrock. Men UFC väntar sig utöka deltagarna i denna exklusiva lilla klubb med bland annat Tito Ortiz.
– Despite my personal problems with Tito, he belongs in [the UFC Hall of Fame], säger UFCs VD Dana White till MMAFighting. He was the champion when we first bought this thing. The fact that Tito is still here, Tito and I have had our moments, but it doesn’t change what he did for the company. The beef between me and Tito, Chuck and Tito, the fact is, that played a huge role in helping making this thing as big as it is.
Men Ortiz är inte den enda som kommer dyka upp här, utan den färgstarke VDn vill även ha in BJ Penn där.
– Definitely, svarar White när frågan om Penn platsade i Hall of Fame. The thing about B.J. Penn is that what he brought to the lightweight division, there was a point in time when we first bought this company when people thought guys in the lighter weight divisions couldn’t be stars and couldn’t see pay-per-views and couldn’t cross over. B.J. Penn was definitely that first crossover guy for us.
Men medan Ortiz har sin pension inplanerad direkt efter matchen mot Forrest Griffin för den tredje gången den 7 juli på UFC 148, så verkar Penn redan mer eller mindre ha gått i pension. Detta tror dock inte white på.
– [Penn] will be back. It’s tough, when there are 16,000 people in the arena chanting your name, it’s tough to walk away from that. BJ Penn is a fighter. You hear some of these guys, and Tito was one of these guys, he said he wanted to be famous. BJ Penn is a fighter.