UFC 47: Chuck vs. Tito
The feud between former friends Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell led to what at the time would be the biggest fight in UFC history. Ortiz and Liddell met on April 2, 2004, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
When Ortiz was light heavyweight champion, there always seemed to be one reason or another why he had not met Liddell, the No. 1 contender. Ortiz was injured for a spell, left to shoot a movie for awhile, and so on. Ortiz claimed he didn’t want to take the fight because he said the two were friends and had agreed not to fight. Liddell disputed that contention and badly wanted the match, which took two years to put together.
But after Randy Couture claimed the title from Ortiz at UFC 44, Ortiz could no longer duck Liddell, not if he wanted to get another shot at the title.
Liddell scored a second-round TKO in this match, but the bout was not without controversy. Liddell appeared to poke Ortiz in the eye just before the final closing sequence on the cage, when Liddell rained combinations on Ortiz before Ortiz slumped to the floor and the fight was stopped.
Ortiz said afterward that he couldn’t see properly because of the eye poke, which infuriated Liddell more.
Liddell didn’t score the only dramatic knockout of the night, though. Nick Diaz, a submission specialist, opted to stand with Robbie Lawler and knocked him out face-first on the canvas with a right hand to the chin.
Andrei Arlovski knocked out Wesley “Cabbage” Correira in what would turn out to be Correira’s last fight in the UFC. Known for his iron chin, Correira finished in the UFC with a 2-2 mark.
Former heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia was supposed to have fought Arlovski, but was dropped from the card when he was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission after testing positive for steroids.
The paid gate of $1.44 million was the second-largest at the time, behind only UFC 40, which was $1.54 million.
UFC 47 did 104,00 pay-per-view buys, the first card to crack the 100,000 mark since Ortiz vs. Ken Shamrock at UFC 40 did 144,000. In contrast, the Liddell-Ortiz rematch in Dec. 2006 did 1.05 million buys.
Genki Sudo def. Mike Brown, submission (armbar), 3:31 R1
Jonathan Wiezorek def, Wade Shipp, TKO, 4:39 R1
Mike Kyle def. Wes Sims, KO, 4:59 R1
Nick Diaz def. Robbie Lawler, KO, 2:31 R2
Andrei Arlovski def. Wesley Correira, TKO, 1:15 R2
Yves Edwards def. Hermes Franca, split decision
Chris Lytle def. Tiki Ghosn, submission (bulldog choke), 1:55 R2
Chuck Liddell def. Tito Ortiz, KO, 0:38 R2
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