Report: Liddell vs. Jardine to headline UFC 76

UFCJunkie.com is exclusively reporting that the main event for UFC 76 on September 22 in Anaheim, Calif. will be a light heavyweight clash between Keith Jardine and Chuck Liddell.

The UFC needed a fall back after it was unable to make a match between Liddell and Wanderlei Silva and didn’t have many options on the table considering Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, Quinton Jackson, and Dan Henderson are all booked for other bouts.

I have to say I’m a little surprised that Forrest Griffin didn’t get this slot considering he’s coming off a win and Jardine is coming off a loss, but Jardine might be a better candidate considering he holds a head-to-head win over Griffin. Liddell will clearly be the favorite in this bout but Jardine is dangerous and this could turn into an exciting slugfest.

You can read Junkie’s exclusive by clicking here.

9 COMMENTS
  • says:

    In what so far has been an amazing year of MMA, this is a huge disappointment. And it makes no sense. With all the possible matchup options that exist at LHW, THIS is what we get for a headliner? I’m a huge Dana White fan but this really disgusts me and reeks of cronyism…and frankly reminds me of boxing.

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  • says:

    I have to disagree with you Zack.

    In order for a fighter to beat Chuck, they need to be a heavy hitter. When he was up against wrestlers, Chuck fared well because his takedown defense was so good. It’s guys like Rampage that are the biggest threat. They are putting Chuck in there with another fighter that can swing for the fences. With Shogun, Henderson, and Rampage all signed to other fights, what else could they do? Personally, I’d rather see Griffin vs. Liddell but Jardine vs. Liddell might as well be the same thing.

    Maybe this isn’t a Super Bowl of MMA matchup but it’s a solid alternative considering the options the UFC had. It should be a good standup affair with some big hits. And while Chuck is the favorite, the outcome is far from a lock.

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  • says:

    But its a waste of a fight for Chuck. If he wins, but the fight takes a toll on him, what have we gained? Not much in my opinion. He’ll have beaten a guy who was demolished by a radio DJ and now he’s less fit to fight the guys we want to see him fight like Silva, Shogun, etc. It doesn’t make ansy sense to me. A 37 yr old fighter probably has a limited number of fights in him and it should only be against top level competition.

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  • says:

    I agree with Zack…

    Keith Jardine vs. Chuck Liddell makes absolutely no sense to me. I’d rather see the UFC go out and bring in a guy like Ricardo Arona or Antonio Rogerio Nogueira to face Liddell. I don’t want to see Chuck fighting a guy like Keith Jardine at this point.

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  • says:

    What the UFC will gain if Chuck beats Jardine is that it makes it easier to sell him fighting for the title on the Dec. 29 card. That’s purely conjecture on my part but you got to think that that’s the plan: if Chuck wins he faces the winner of Hendo vs. Rampage.

    If Chuck gets caught and loses? Well, then they have something in Jardine. If they aren’t comfortable with Jardine vs. the winner of Hendo vs. Rampage then they could always hot shot Shogun into the Dec. title fight (again, I am assuming that the UFC’s plan is to have a big light heavyweight title fight for Dec. 29… I have no info on this).

    As for ‘Lil Nog, Dana said last weekend that they aren’t talking to him. I believe he’s focusing on boxing right now so I don’t see him as an option. Plus, who do you think is a bigger name to U.S. fans — ‘Lil Nog or Jardine?

    Same applies to Arona. It would be a great fight for the hardcores like you and I but the UFC doesn’t just sell fights for the hardcores. More people know Jardine than Arona. In order for Arona vs. Liddell to mean anything Arona would need a few showcase fights.

    Look, I’d rather see a higher profile fighter face Chuck too but I think the UFC is doing the best they can with the circumstances they’ve been dealt.

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  • says:

    First of all, do you guys really believe this will actually happen. How many fights that have been “exclusively” reported have fell through lately.
    Secondly Zach is right, what does this possibly do for Liddell except knock him WAAAAY down the rankings if he gets caught.
    I think this is a bunk report. Dana and Joe have more sense than Liddell-Jardine.

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  • says:

    First of all, do you guys really believe this will actually happen. How many fights that have been “exclusively” reported have fell through lately.

    If that’s supposed to be a shot at UFCjunkie.com, I’d like for you to answer your own question for me.

    Which of our reports were “bunk?” The Silva-Liddell report? We said a verbal agreement was in place, which Dana White himself confirmed.

    Regardless, you make it sound as though multiple fights have fallen through that we reported. Which ones?

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  • says:

    I have no problem with it as an alternative. We don’t really have a choice. And at the very least it will be entertaining. Chuck wants to fight and all the better options at LHW as currently set to fight, so unless you wanted Griffin I don’t see a reason to complain.

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  • says:

    Sam – are you assuming Chuck gets the winner of Hendo/Page rather than Shogun/Lyoto getting the shot? I hope that doesn’t end up being the case. I think Rampage wins in Sept and the idea of seeing a third match between he and Chuck doesn’t excite me as much as seeing a potential re-match with Shogun. If Hendo wins, I’d rather see him fight Shogun, with the Chute Box revenge backdrop.

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