(A black & white photo makes it uber classy, no?)
The Iceman has spoken about who he wants to fight next (after UFC 85) and it includes the usual suspects, plus a new entry. Liddell thinks he should be the one to take down Fedor Emelianenko. Chuck spoke to The Sun recently and had this to say about a possible match-up with the Russian badass:
“Fedor’s someone I want to fight because he’s someone I match up well with. He’s a ground and pound guy that doesn’t have a great shot. He doesn’t have a great game plan.
“I think I could take him. I think I match up well with him.
“As far as I know he’s never knocked anyone out from his feet and I think he’d have a hard time taking me down.”
Liddell goes on to say he might consider a move up to the heavyweight division once he’s done with light heavyweight. By “done”, we assume he means beating Rampage, Jardine, Wanderlei Silva again, and successfully defending the belt against someone like Dana-favorite Sokoudjou.
On the Wanderlei rematch:
“Of course I’d consider fighting Wanderlei again. If he wants to fight me after I get the title this year then I’d like to fight him the way it was supposed to go down first time round – with us fighting for the title.”
This all despite the recent claim by Yahoo’s Kevin Iole that “Wanderlei Silva plans to drop to 185 after his May 24 fight with Keith Jardine and UFC president Dana White said Tuesday he wouldn’t mind a Silva vs. Silva bout sometime later this year.” While a move to middleweight for Silva is a whole different subject – if it did happen, who else would Liddell want a piece of? He kept talking to The Sun in a separate story and promised Keith Jardine a title shot if Chuck regains the light heavyweight belt. Check it out:
“Of course I’d consider a rematch with him – that’s one of the things I really want to do. I want to get back and settle that, I was off that night, I wasn’t quite me at UFC 76.
“I don’t know if he’s someone who can get into title contention – we’ll see what happens – but if I’ve got the title then for sure, I’m going to ask for him. When I get the title back I’m going to ask for a fight against him. I’m going to give him a shot at it.”
Not sure if Jardine is “someone who can get into title contention?” Didn’t he kick your ass last year? Are you sippin’ the syrup again, Chuck? Anyway, the Iceman is obviously banking on fighting the winner of the Rampage Jackson/Forrest Griffin battle set for Independence Weekend. Liddell was to battle Maricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 85 on June 7th, but his opponent blew out his ACL and had to withdraw. Shogun – who undergoes surgery on his knee on March 8th – still wants the fight, according to MMA Fightline:
“I’m calm,” said Rua. “I have to operate, there is no other way. I hope Chuck waits for me (laughs)”
Rua is confident about his return to the octagon, “I’ll be back likely in August.”
Sorry, but an August return is pushing it for this type of injury. Did I mention I’m a doctor? Yeah, it’s true. Liddell didn’t mention Shogun in all his future conquests and also barely spoke of his next bout versus Rashad Evans. Can’t blame him, because there’s not much to say.