Back in the prime days of Chuck Liddell’s fighting career, the best fighters were spread out across multiple MMA promotions, mainly the UFC and PRIDE Fighting Championships. While it meant more alternatives for MMA fans to choose from, it also meant less of a chance that several “dream matchups” could come to fruition.
These days, the UFC is the premier MMA promotion, with Bellator MMA in second. And while Liddell, who is also a former front-office executive at the UFC, sees it as a great set-up for fight fans, he also knows what can happen when a promotion gets too much power.
“Remember back in the day when it was UFC and Pride, and now it’s just the best guys are here and we’re not having to guess who’s the best?” Liddell said on a recent edition of The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani. “It was almost like a pound-for-pound ranking, where you’re just randomly picking who would fit as best in the world. So for fans, I think it’s best to have one big league. A big league and then you’ve got the best guys in the world all in the one league.”
Liddell is another fighter who advocates for a UFC fighter’s union, which groups like the PFA, MMAFA, and most recently Project Spearhead have been pushing for.
“As a fan, I really want all my fighters in the same place and I want the best guys fighting the best guys. And I don’t want two 0-1 guys fighting on my card [like CM Punk and Mike Jackson at UFC 225] wasting space on my card. That’s a fight fan. I understand the business side of that too, but it is what it is.”
You can watch the full interview with Liddell, who also discusses coming out of retirement in the hopes of a trilogy bout with Tito Ortiz, in the video player above.
Original Story: MMA Fighting