Ortiz throws St. Pierre under the bus

Hats off to Adam Wagner of MMAMania.com for conducting a great interview with Tito Ortiz. You’ve got to check it out. Tito always gives good interview, but he was especially on his game. When he wasn’t calling Ed Soares, the manager of Anderson Silva, Lyoto Machida, and other top Brazilian fighters, a “scumbag,” he was throwing Georges St. Pierre under the bus:

Adam Wagner (MMAmania.com): So are you saying that a lot of these fighters who we see on television as the faces of the UFC, do you think that behind the scenes, they are commenting on that type of thing but are just afraid to say it?

Tito Ortiz: Of course they’re commenting on it. There are all kinds of guys … Georges St. Pierre, I know he’s very disgusted with the UFC, but it’s just one of those things where they give him little small things that he thinks are great. He gets a brand new Hummer, like “Wow, I get an awesome new Hummer” (and it) costs 50 grand, and all of a sudden I gotta pay taxes on it, and I gotta pay for gas, and dutta-dutta-duh.

These little small things they give them to make fighters happy because they know they’ve never had those things before. Well let’s think about when fighters have their cars and have their houses, and now all of sudden, they’re like, “Well I want to start paying bills. I want to start paying for all this stuff, because I’m not gonna be able to fight for the rest of my life,” you know.

I can’t be the president of a company and say what happens and say what goes here and what goes there. I want to be a fighter. You got to think outside of the box, and not just think as a fighter, but think as a businessman.

That’s what it really comes down to, because there are other fighters who are screaming as loud as they possibly can … under their own tone. And they can’t say anything, because the UFC holds a thumb over them. If they speak out, they’ll squash ‘em. Just as they did with Randy Couture, they squashed him.

If GSP is in fact disgusted with the UFC, then he’s never said anything publicly. And if he’s said something privately, I’m not sure he’s going to appreciate Ortiz taking the liberty of spilling the beans for him.

You really should check out the entire interview. Just click here.

29 COMMENTS
  • Cabelo says:

    “If GSP is in fact disgusted with the UFC, then he’s never said anything publicly.” – If he is disgusted, then he hasn’t said anything because he’s a smart fighter, with an eye for business. Openly bitching about the UFC’s practices as a fighter tends to land you in another organization. Good article though.

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  • Handover Fist says:

    I think Tito and Wile E. Coyote have a lot in common. They both look in the mirror and stroke their chin and think they’re a super genius.

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  • andy says:

    yeah i can’t see this as anything other than Tito running his mouth. and frankly putting words in other people’s mouths.. he conveniently “forgot” to mention the reported $500,000 bonus that Dana also gave GSP (along with the hummer!) for destroying Matt Hughes at UFC 65.

    GSP also did sign that extension a couple fights ago.. what has happened since then? he’s demo’ed a couple top 10 guys and most likely was rewarded nicely for it.. the only beef I can think of for GSP is the banning of his sponsor Affliction (which he did mention in the post UFC 83 press conference – when asked about why his shorts were straight black). Anyways, not that I have any inside information to base this on, but I have a strong feeling this is Tito trying to up his “the UFC is screwing fighters” argument by leeching onto a UFC posterboy like GSP.

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  • Evan says:

    Tito is just going a anti-ufc campaign because they won’t over pay him for beating up Ken Shamrock anymore.

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  • A.C Slater says:

    I have to admit, I despise Tito, but that was actually a great interview.
    Once you cut through all the self-aggrandizing, of course.

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  • [...] throws GSP under the bus Five Ounces of Pain | Ortiz throws St. Pierre under the bus [...]

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  • UFC69INTX says:

    tito is killing any chance he has of saving face,,,, he is going to bash the ufc and not help himself by any means, he will end up in another organization and lose his first fight and completely drop off the face of the earth

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  • canuck says:

    A.C. Slater, once you cut through Tito’s senf aggrandizing, you’re left with punctuation.

    He’s not wrong about fighter salaries, but this happens in every sport, the creme rises and gets paid well, the other 80% try to make ends meet.

    He sure talks big for a guy who hasn’t got a clear win against a serious opponent in years.
    I”m sure if he wins this next fight, the UFC will offer him something, if not, they can cut their losses – he’s not in a good position to bargain right now

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  • paddiosf says:

    Tito is coming off so “bitter”..he knows that the UFC and MMA is growing up and he peaked back during the early years and he helped it grow but also he probaly feels like I built this sport and now my better days are behind me know..I see him going either to Allifition or EliteXC which would be a good move because he loves TV and they could help promote him better than the UFC..

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  • [...] Tito begins rushing to burn every bridge possible [...]

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  • Kelvin says:

    “tito is killing any chance he has of saving face,,,, he is going to bash the ufc and not help himself by any means, he will end up in another organization and lose his first fight and completely drop off the face of the earth”

    I hope you are right.

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  • bjjdenver says:

    Tito may very well be correct. He may even be 100% correct for all we know. Unfortunately, the way he bashes and does self-promoting, tends to cover the points he tries to make. Valid or not, his complaints seem to get lost or written off as sour grapes.

    Oh well, best of luck to him wherever he ends up.

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  • L Grant says:

    Wow, tons of Tito hate on here, maybe not hate, but dislike. I kind of think Tito is right. I think the fighters deserve more money. There have been a lot of guys saying they’re disappointed.

    I don’t know if it’s a matter of a market that can’t support more money, or the UFC just being cheap, but MMA fighters don’t see anything like the $30 million that Mayweather and De LaHoya got. Of course, that’s not the norm in boxing, but even the lower boxing payouts are a hell of a lot larger than the MMA payouts we see.

    I also enjoy watching Tito fight. I’ve never been bored by him, and he is a pretty huge draw. Even if he’s not in the same spot on the rankings he once was, he’s still exciting, and very famous.

    If Affliction were to pick him up, like Sylvia, and now maybe/probably Arlovski, we could see some MAJOR competition for the UFC.

    Either way, I’m excited to see his match with Machida, and I’m also hoping that wherever he ends up, he does well.

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  • Michael says:

    My question i have for you Grant is how long is affliction going to be able to stay afloat? THey are paying a lot of money to their fighters but are they going to be able to sustain those paychecks? Love em or hate em the UFC does a great job of Marketing and can support their product with money from that along with the PPV rev and the gate…Aflliction is going to run into the same problem that the IFL is…they are going to Run out of money…i for one think competition is great for all aspects of business but someone cant just up and say i want to start a promotion, it didnt work to well with Vince McMahon and the xfl…it takes time…you have to start from the bottom, be successful and make your way to the top. Overpaying fighters to get name recognition is a horrible business plan.

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  • Cinomed says:

    I can’t find the link handy, but someone recently compared a few big boxing to big mma fights on the basis of payouts.
    Obviously it was a small comparison, but it seems that other then the multi million dollar headliners, the rest of the boxing card made about what the lower end UFC fighters made, with the exception of a win bonus.

    The conclusion was, a lower end UFC fighter had a chance at making a lot more money than a lower end Boxer on this particular card……

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  • GoofyMonkey says:

    Um, hello? He’s Canadian… We don’t say bad things about people… Except that little bitch Shelly in the 4th grade who said she wanted to kiss me an then… Nevemind. Sorry.

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  • GoofyMonkey says:

    St. Pierre that is.

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  • Mike Wolfe says:

    My impression of the interview is that Tito is trying to rally other fighters to agree with him. His complaints about UFC would be more weighty if others publicly agreed with him. I don’t think they will, because he’s already on the way out of the organization. Why jump onto Tito’s sinking ship? That having been said, I tend to agree with him about future comp. If UFC continues to earn money from DVD’s or Webcasts of their fights, some sort of residual to fighters like TV networks seems fair. I don’t think Tito’s abrasive style is the way to make that happen, though. The agents will have to “lock step” on the issue and insist that the organization agree to something to sign their guys.

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  • bubbafat says:

    Tito should stop talkin’ out his ass and start his own org. with the connections he made on celeb apprentass.

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  • L Grant says:

    Hey Michael (#14)
    I totally see where you’re coming from, and you’re right, other organizations have tried and failed, and it seems like the UFC has a great business model, and maybe they’re doing everything right.

    But, like I also mentioned, I don’t know if the market can’t support it or not, but I think the fighters deserve more.

    It’s entirely possible that the UFC isn’t the bad guy that Tito and other fighters make them out to be.

    It’s very possible that Affliction will find that after production costs, fighter salaries, insurance, licenses, and all the other factors that I personally have no idea about, that they’ll have made a mistake, and they’ll fold.

    But, it’s also very possible that the UFC is underpaying the fighters, and not giving them their fair share. There are valid arguements to support the UFC in doing this, and to criticize them.

    Sometimes I think that the UFC might just be putting the cash away for a rainy day. They’ve experienced lean times in the past, and maybe their financial and market forecasting is showing that after the current boom, things will level out. It’s possible that a lot of the profits are going into a fund that will sustain them in the hard times they forsee.

    Maybe they’re using it to pay off old investors, and to offset a lot of the debt they incurred in the past. Maybe there are unknown factors and they’re a lot closer to breaking even, than to making the massive profits, that we all think they’re making.

    Either way, whether it’s possible now, or not, what I’m saying, and maybe I miscommunicated it in my original post, is that I would like to see MMA fighters get the same pay-days that some of the top draws in boxing get.

    (I hope that didn’t come off as snarky or mean spirited, it wasn’t meant to be)

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  • Michael says:

    Grant, thanks! Not mean spirited at all. I understand where you are comming from as well. I would love to see each fighter making more money too, but from a business stand point, they have to start somewhere. everyone starts somewhere and has to earn their way up. I agree with the high end fighters making more money, it would be nice to see. Although i think tito is more of an attraction than a high end fighter…

    Like you said we are both just speculating about money they make. I’d like to see some of those high end guys making more too, but i think it will get there. Its hard to grasp that this sport was in ruins 4-5 years ago, it is smart of them to not get ahead of themselves in the spending department. The success in this sport happend so fast that expectations were set at an unrealistic growth curve…it will be intersting to see what happens in the next 2-4 years.

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  • AH says:

    I dont see how GSP would be disgusted with the UFC. They marketed him as an unstoppable force after he beat Hughes the first time… then he lost to the inferior fighter. So what did the UFC do.. they gave him a TUF alumnus that alot of fans know and who was considered in the top 10 welterweights. Then they gave him Hughes again. But wait theres more…. they gave him his title shot in front of a hometown crowd. Why wouldnt he be happy with the UFC? Tito is a jackass whos trying to piss off Dana anyway he can.

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  • Jo says:

    It was a great interview that Mania did with Tito. It was a bad move of Tito to even bring up GSP’s name. I think “IF” GSP has any issues with the UFC it would be a private matter between him and his manager. I highly doubt that Tito would have had that conversation with him. Maybe Tito just thew that name out there because he knows GSP is the current face of the UFC and will be for a while.

    I am sure the UFC really takes what Tito says seriously….. ;)

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  • jason hughes says:

    mike wolfe he might be trying to rally the fighters , do you think he is going about the wrong way ?

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  • DPK says:

    I think that the top notch fighters will start making more in the future as they get better at marketing themselves, and their names move more into the mainstream. There was a great article by Kevin Iole from yahoo at the end of April comparing the paydays from an UFC event against a big ppv boxing card in Vegas. One of the best things that MMA has going for it right now is the win bonus’s, and the other bonus’s that get offered like knockout/submission/fight of the night. I think this prevents more Starnes like performances.

    I don’t really care about Tito, nobody held a gun to his head and made him sign a contract with UFC. If he can make more elsewhere after this contract, go ahead.

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  • L Grant says:

    One of my reasons for wanting to see the top tier fighters get paid more money, is one of pure selfishness.

    I believe that if MMA fighters start making the 10 million dollar fight purses that we’ve seen in boxing, then we’ll see better athletes come into MMA.

    Imagine a guy like Brian Urlacher, or Lebron James? These guys are serious multi-faceted athletes. Guys who can do whatever they want to do, it all comes natural to them. Imagine someone like Devon Hester putting his considerable natural prowess into MMA? He’d make GSP look like Ricco Rodriguez. Okay, that’s not fair, GSP is probably pretty damn close to being on that same level as Hester.

    But, hopefully you get what I’m saying. The more money the fighters make, the more likely we are to see some of the pure athletes who go into football, basketball, and boxing, come into MMA.

    I know there are a crap load of factors other than money, but big pay days would be a start.

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  • mike wolfe says:

    #24 Jason:

    Yeah, Tito is too angry and bitter. He may feel that way, but he shouldn’t express himself like that because it’s too easy for those who disagree with him to write him off as a whiner or a crank. Tito has enough stature in the sport that if he gave thoughtful interviews about compensation issues that confront all fighters, he might sway opinion. But his angry rants about UFC and how they’ve mistreated him (which is debatable, at least in my mind) undermine his credibility. If you try to start a conversation with somebody by attacking them or their character, you’re not giving yourself the chance to be persuasive. Instead of complaining about UFC, he and other fighters moving out of the UFC should try to persuade the other orgs. to pay some small residual for fights that are rebroadcast or sold in other formats. Once the precedent has been set, UFC might have to follow suit or risk losing top tier talent whose fights will generate future income.

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  • bjjdenver says:

    #25 DPK…

    I agree. Another thing is, I think the Bud Light sponsorship is huge. Assuming they promote mma guys with their products, the mainstream acceptance will surely follow. I know guys like Fedor were getting big sponsorship money and recognition while Pride was going, and I think that will be key in the US. More exposure=more money from sponsorships=fighters in higher demand=higher salary and bigger revenues for promotions, at least that is how I see it.

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  • triangleman says:

    Ok, so as much as I feel tito has done wonders for mma the sport has past him by much like it has matt hughes. He is a great wrestler and a good striker with almost no submission prowess! When was his last big win vs. A brand name opponent, no offense forrest griffin or rashad evans but seriously! He was dominated by chuck liddell and his only wins that really come to mind were vs. Ken shamrock! He needs to save face hope he beats lyoto and pray for an offer from ufc because noone will be able to pay him what he wants! I respect what he has done but its about time he started fighting more than once a year to earn some much needed respect because his mouth is costing him what he had left

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