Chuck Liddell’s next opponent could be Shogun Rua or Wanderlei Silva

Editor’s Note: Content from this article appears courtesy of CBSSports.com.

Former UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell is on the comeback trail. In his last fight, Liddell suffered a knockout loss to new UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans.

Now, Liddell is preparing for his return to the Octagon. He had openly spoke about wanting to face Keith Jardine in a rematch. Jardine defeated Liddell by decision in September of 2007.

UFC President Dana White quickly shot down that possibility.

“It will not be Jardine,” said White.

As far as potential opponents for Liddell, White tabbed two fighters as options.

“If (Mauricio Rua) Shogun defeats Mark Coleman in Ireland, it could be Shogun — or it could be Wanderlei (Silva),” said White.

Liddell’s return will take place on March 7 in Columbus, Ohio.

28 COMMENTS
  • Eric says:

    Please match him up against Rua. Why the interest in him facing Wanderlei again? Last week it was Couture rumors. Will next week see him maybe facing Jeremy Horn or Sobral? Chuck has a limited number of fights left, so I would rather see him face fresh competition and not something I’ve seen before, or even three times before.

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  • chris says:

    i agree i want to see him fight shogun that would be awesome. i wouldn’t mind jardine but that’s already out of the question. him and wanderlei had an awesome fight but id rather see wanderlei go to middle weight it need’s a guy like him there.

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  • Robert says:

    If Shogun beats Coleman he may fight Liddell next . What about Coleman no mention of him and he’s going to win.

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  • JOHN says:

    NOT INTERESTED IN WANDY-LIDDELL 2 OR ATLEAST YET, wandy needs to go to mw, i would be interested in jardine 2, Rua would be nice also, but if Rua lost what would be in store for him after that

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  • Juelz says:

    Chuck vs Wanderlei II is too soon to make again they both need to start winning again to make it interesting. Liddell vs Shogun could be a good match , i want to see him face Forrest aswell . I don’t think Chuck will be top contender ever again, he’s pretty much over that’s why i think Dana wants to put him against big names so they can milk some money out of his name instead of giving him “easy” fights like Jardine with the risk of a another loss against him that would damage his marketability a lot. Jardine ain’t that big of a name would he loose against him again that would pretty much be a killing blow to his career.

    Chuck is 38 years old his golden days are over now he needs to realize that himself and stop blaiming it on being “caught” the truth is that he’s been caught in all his recent fights not always knocked out but atleast knocked on his butt.

    Wanderleis days in the top is also over i think , he’s only 32 years old but he’s been knocked out cold in 3 of his last 5 fights if he gets knocked out again i think that will pretty much end his career.

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  • Hawkins says:

    After Shogun kills Mark Coleman, why would he want his next fight to be someone who may be on the downslope. I know Dana wants to sell it as a headline fight, but Chuck isn’t headline material for a PPV at this time. He could always earn his way back up there, but give him someone on the upswing to fight so that it’s a real test instead of someone on their way down.

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  • Jeremy says:

    NSAC has Silva suspended til mid-february anyways, so i would think that a fight with Chuck in early March might be impossible.

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  • hambone76 says:

    No love for coleman? I wouldnt mind that fight.

    Shogun is the better choice to make an exciting fight, though.

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  • jasonah says:

    Looking @ this realisticly,Chuck has like four fight’s left in him,And out of those four fight’s,He will at least lose two of them.Dana knows chuck has peaked out.But still trys to sell fight’s That we still Might want to see.Let’s face it .A changing in gaurd is happening,Guy’s like Chuck And tito And wanderlie Are past there prime.Guy’s like Rashad,Rampage,Forrest, That one silva guy,And Loyoto are the future of the 205 division And hell why not put matt hamil’s name in there. It,s sad to see wanderlie go down like he has,That guy’s just been in too many war’s.

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  • drdsanders says:

    The UFC is doing anything they can to avoid giving the winner of Silva/Machida the next title shot. Since they’re mentioning guys who either just fought or are soon to fight, why not throw Bonnar into the mix?

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  • Tom Hodgson says:

    Chuck Liddell’s face after Rampage knocked out Silva? Priceless.

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  • ihateemo says:

    I cannot think of a single reason that facing silva again so soon would be compelling viewing.

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  • Austin says:

    SHOGUN

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  • DamonO says:

    Wandy vs. Chuck 2 is way more marketable for the UFC than Shogun at this point in time, even if Shogun beats Coleman which is pretty much guaranteed.

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  • Mike says:

    The sad thing is I can’t think of a reasonable match up for Liddell. If you want the “sure thing” match up it won’t sell as a main event or even a top level fight. If you pick one of the guys in the title mix, it’ll sell well but the UFC is going to lose more money if their golden boy gets picked apart again (and they don’t want that). I think Stephan Bonner wouldn’t be a horrible choice. He has name recognition from being on The Ultimate Fighter and you could build up Liddell being a coach on the same season. However, while I wouldn’t mind seeing it, I can’t see many others being that excited to pay for it.

    This is an odd situation for Chuck and the UFC. You either keep him at the top of the heap and hope he doesn’t get murdered like he did against Evans or you turn him into the gate keeper of the division. The latter just won’t due. It’d be nice to see someone like Brian Stann or Steve Cantwell get a shot at one of the big name guys but I think it’s just too risky for the organization if they want to keep one of the faces of the organization relevant.

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  • mburtoni says:

    Chuck vs. Wandy II is not compelling because, since their initial bout, both have been brutally knocked out (in addition to Wanderlei brutally knocking out Keith Jardine.) There is no suspense or serious title contention consideration on the line here; it is basically a fight between 2 aging mixed martial artists who are now widely considered to be past their prime; thus the rematch becomes about as relevant as Shamrock vs. Kimo at UFC 48.

    I think the best candidate for Chuck’s next opponent should be the loser of Henderson / Franklin. If it’s Hendo, thats a fight that many have wanted to see for years and could have the “former pride champion vs. former ufc champion” sort of marketing hype. If it’s Franklin, then 2 of the UFC’s biggest and most beloved stars get to fight each other. Also very marketable.

    Not that there aren’t other compelling match-ups for Chuck out there. Either Shogun or Coleman would be an interesting fight for Chuck, regardless of who wins in January. The loser of Machida/T. Silva could be a good opponent. Even Houston Alexander who be a more interesting fight for Chuck than a rematch with Wandy.

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  • Golion says:

    how about franklin vs chuck?

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  • king mah mah says:

    I think he needs to beat Jardine before he does anything else. That pisses me off that Dana has already ruled it out.

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  • king mah mah says:

    I don’t see why everyone is counting Wanderlei out. He fought good against Chuck and damn near killed jardine! So now Rampage ko’s him and he’s done just like that? I don’t think so.

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  • G-DUB says:

    Chuck vs. Houston Alexander …. now there’s a barn-burner. Alexander would probably play right into Chuck’s counterstrike strategy, but it would be fun while it lasted. After losing 3 out of his last 4, does Liddell really need stiffer competition? Let him get that one KO under his belt (even against lesser competition) so that his fans can start to believe again.

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  • JOe K. says:

    Maybe these fighters whom are easily knocked out (chuck and wandy) should face more jiu-jitzu guys as opposed to big strikers.

    If Dana is will to give Yushin Okami a shot at middleweight then he will probably give Lyoto a shot at Evans if he wins.

    Otherwise a Chuck/Machida or Wandy/Machida fight would be good.

    A KO is loss looks horrible for your image particularly when your older. If they want these guys to fall gracefully then they should not put them against big strikers.

    I will hardly call Jardine a tomato can, he has some notable wins plus he’s Greg Jackson. So a Jardine match up may not be the best idea.

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  • Imbecile says:

    Liddell should fight Shogun if/when Shogun gets past Coleman. Another match against Wanderlei does nothing for either man’s career at this stage. I wouldn’t mind seeing that rematch, but let’s do it a little further down the road.

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  • aguilar says:

    griffin vs liddell
    TUF student vs coach
    Big fight. Griffin would beat Chuck though.
    whoever would win would get their rematch with rashad.

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  • aguilar says:

    i agree with imbecile
    chuck’s last five fights-only beat ortiz nd silva(by da looks of nither fighters got it anymore)
    Wandy last five fights-only beat jardine(whos truly a top contender in my opinion)..BUT lost four fights and got KO’d three times

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  • Alvis says:

    youngbloods are taking over.

    not sure if Chuck is still a big threat in that division tbh.

    I reckon Dana will keep Chucks last few fights as showcases for London and Germany in 2009. They need his recognisable mug and international marketability to push UFC as a business….maybe one biggie in Vegas next year end ?

    He needs to fight Shogun possibly Hendo and maybe even Forrest.

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  • greatone1939 says:

    There is no way Chuck would be able to fight Shogun in March. Even if he wins Shogun is fighting just 2 months before that. That leaves less thatn 8 weeks to have a full camp. That’s not even including if he incurs any damage which would garnish a medical suspension. Plus how many fighters in the UFC recently (besides Koscheck)have fought in that amount of time. It’s just not gonna happen. I think his next fight should be Jardine. If Chuck wins he might show he has a future. If not there is nothing for him to say. You lost twice to mid-tier fighter, it’s time for a change.

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  • awannabe says:

    Out with the old in with the new. Chuck Liddel, etc. are getting old chronologically and entertainment-wise… not to mention they are getting their a– ‘s whipped. It’s time to move on. Highlight the winners Dana White!

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  • Lucid says:

    Forget Silva that would be meaningless, and Chuck really doesn’t deserve Forrest although I think that would revive his career. Chuck should fight Rua or Jardine. Since jardine is out of the question (I agree he shouldn’t be however) he must face Rua. A win would get him back in the mix

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