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Ortiz vs. Franklin & Henderson vs. Belfort on deck for UFC 103?

Drastic changes to UFC 103 appear to be underway.

titoortiz1Adding fuel to the fire, a newly available fighter such as Tito Ortiz or Vitor Belfort could be seeing action in the Octagon on September 19th as has recently removed the previously announced rematch between Rich Franklin and Dan Henderson scheduled to headline UFC 103 in Dallas, TX.

The move was not only a surprise to fans expecting a second clash between the iconic fighters but apparently Franklin himself as well. Earlier today “Ace” posted the following message through Twitter:

“I’ve heard the UFC pulled my fight off the website for 103. I don’t know why. They haven’t spoken to me about this and I assume the fight is still on.”

Henderson has not yet responded on the matter via Twitter but assures people he ate some excellent Mako Shark tacos on Friday night.

Whether the Team Quest icon and former UFC Middleweight Champion will face new opponents, each other, or anyone at all come UFC 103 remains up in the air at this moment.

Stay tuned to as news continues to develop!

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    This is getting weirder and more surreal by the day. Pretty soon we’ll be hearing that Mark Coleman’s next oppenent will be Kimo.

    Thanks 5oz for being the first on this!

  • fanoftna33 says:

    This has been the most exciting week I can remember ever in mma. We have had exciting days but nothing like this.

  • Rich S. says:

    Now THAT would top off one bad ass card!

  • Kamakosmo says:

    AWESOME!!!! How soon before this (especially the UFC) becomes the biggest Money making sport in the World? This week has been crazy! If Dana can pull all of this stuff off, he will have definitely earned his “ESPN Sportsman Of the Year” Award.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Vitor would ko henderson at 185, henderson won a decision last time but he always gases in fights(( here in the ufc at least) Belfort ko rd 3.

  • edub says:

    Id like to see Tito vs Hendo. But hopefully itll be how be how it was reported.

    I see Rich via dec or tko; and Hendo via dec again.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    I see Belfort getting a TKO on Hendo. They both would have alot of steam going into this bout, and Belfort wants to make up for his last loss, which would have been to Dan Henderson at Pride 32. Age and experience may come into play on this one as well.

    Let’s not forget Belfort holds the record for the youngest fighter to secure a victory in the octagon at age 19 at UFC 12. On a side note, Overeem and Couture are the only two to beat him twice, with Vitor getting one win out of three fights with Couture. That leaves Overeem, Henderson, & Ortiz as the only fighters he has not either beaten or avenged a loss to.

  • dpk says:

    This is still speculation, but I hope it goes down like this. This card would be insane at the end of the day, with number 1 contender matches at WW and MW. This big time card would be exactly what Dana wants to put up against Mayweather on that night.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    “put up against Mayweather”

    I didn’t even think about that. Wow. That’s all I can say; Just… Wow.

    Another side note: I don’t like the idea of Henderson at 39 yrs old constantly moving weight classes. Keep him at middleweight, have him fight Vitor for #1 contender. Here’s why- Cage Rage 23 he walked away with the LHW Title. Undefeated in Affliction. (2 fights, but still) Hasn’t lost since 2006. I’d REALLY like to see Hendo stay at 185, fight Belfort for #1, with the winner getting Anderson Silva for the title.


  • fanoftna33 says:

    I just dont see henderson beating a guy like vitor at this point at 185. Maybe at 205, but Vitor is no Bisping, although that would be a fun fight vitor vs Bisping, Mike has something to prove and would not gas out.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    I don’t see him (Hendo) beating him at 205 either. This guy used to fight heavy, don’t forget

  • metalmulisha says:

    I can’t believe how many people here want to see Belfort/Henderson 2. Did any of you even see the first fight or did you just forget how bad it was?
    You don’t make rematches of fights that were terrible the first time.
    The only way it would be different is if Dan has a meltdown and doesn’t use his wrestling like he did the 1st time and decided to box with Vitor.
    Belfort/Franklin now that would be a good fight.
    Ortiz/Henderson stylistically is a terrible match up for Tito.
    Ortiz couldn’t take him down or hurt him standing up so you can see where that one would go.Ortiz/Coleman sounds more like it.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Belfort has been vicious as of late, to say the least. I also know it’s a loss he would like to avenge, as well as the roadblock (potentially) in Dan’s way of getting a title shot. I don’t think the second fight would be ANYTHING close to the first.

    Hendo would have to go back to 205 for Tito, and I don’t see the reward for doing so. Belfort would also have to go up in weight for Franklin- Again, no need.

  • metalmulisha says:

    I know I’m in the minority on this one but I liked Belfort better at 205 and yes I remember how he KO’d Martin and Lindland, but he looked way better physically at 205. He didn’t have to suck his body dry to the point of looking unhealthy just to make weight like he does at middleweight. I just really like the idea of Belfort and Franklin going at it. I think it’d be a fun fight, and as long as I’m playing match maker that’s what I’d do. Winner would get Machida/Shogun winner.
    As for Henderson he doesn’t care if he fights at 185 or 205 he said so after the Bisping fight, and Tito… well I don’t know really if he doesn’t want to fight someone like Coleman or Bonnar, I guess let him get his ass kicked by Henderson or Cane.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Yeah, I agree. I like him better at 205 myself. I’d question what his stamina is at 185.

    This is why I come to this site, guys. You can speak your mind and give an opinion and not have to worry about people turning you crispy. Plus, the people that frequent this site seem to be a lot more mature and have knowledge about the mma community.

    Thanks guys

  • edub says:

    I dont see a reason for ortiz vs hendo besides id like to see it. But if i had to guess, id say Tito by dec. I dont think Hendo would deal with his size very well.

  • TheHouse says:

    What if…… and this is just crazy talk but what if this was the introduction of a 195 weight class. I mean, we have Henderson, Vitor and Franklin who have all fought at 185 before and then we have Wanderlei who still hasn’t made it down to 185 yet. Who else could you get to cut down from 205 to 195? That leaves Randy, Tito, Griffin, Evans, Machida, Jackson, Jardine, (Liddel if he decides to keep fighting) I know the UFC drops fighters if they aren’t doing well but with Affliction out of the picture and couple of decent names, the UFC could strengthen both weight classes with some new talent. The 195 could run like a tournament for the next 8 months until there is a championship fight sometime in the spring. It seems like all these guys have fought in the last month or so which means they would all be fresh for beginning of a tournament at 103.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    I hate the addition of weight classes, but it actually might work. Most normal sized guys are right there in the middle it seems. I just don’t want this to turn into boxing, where we have classes every 1/4 pound

    What to call that class though?

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    I donno. I’m still on the fence. I see this turning into “Why not have a flyweight and bantam weight too. Then someone is going to bitch about brock weighing in at 265 (which is LEGAL) and saying they want a super heavy.

    I’m more for the super heavy than anything, but I’d rather it stay the way it is.

    I do see a problem though with the UFC eventually getting too big. Maybe we need some 10 – 12 fight cards?? Talk about getting your moneys worth!

  • redness says:

    The 185 class needs pop and thats what Victor would add. Hendo in my option should stay at 185. I would love to see Franklin vs Ortiz, I think Franklin wins but it would be a great fight.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    a 195 wt class would be great, evans would fit nicely. But it also makes a lot more time between title fights for all the champs.

  • PlagueAngel says:

    This is a huge speculation on 5 oz part. Tito Ortiz has barely been in the gym training. If he comes in and fights quick it will be an ugly mess for Ortiz. Follow his Tritter page and I’m sure he will keep us updated on his “championship run”. According to the Hollywood badboy, his comeback is going to be the biggest of any athlete to date. The clown prince is getting warmed up for another run for the cameras!

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Tito is a self promoter to be sure, but he has olny been completly outclassed by three fighters. Lidell, Couture, and Machida. Thats a pretty decent list of champions. Regardless of what he says he is a pro when it comes to training. I see him being 100% when fight time comes.

  • Rich S. says:

    I’m really surprised at how many people think Vitor would beat Hendo..

    Don’t get me wrong, Vitor’s a long time fav of mine, and i’m overjoyed by his comeback and recent dominations, but he has done absolutely terrible against wrestlers in the past.. and Dan Henderson, in 10+ years of fighting, has never been knocked out or even TKO’d..

    So, to think that a fighter that’s performed terribly against wrestlers in the past, is going to come in and knock out said wrestler who has never been knocked out before is kind of wild.. But hey, there’s a first time for everything..

    Here’s what keeps this a tossup for me.. Since moving to XC, Vitor has improved all of his skills tremendously, a MAJOR one of those skills, i’m sure, being the sprawl, and getting back to his feet.. Hendo is probably THE BEST in the world at clinching opponents up and slamming them down to the ground, though.. I just don’t know which of those we’re going to see:

    -Vitor utilizing the sprawl to somehow keep the ever so powerful Dan Henderson off of him, and striking his way to a victory..


    -Hendo getting in close, working through the sprawls, and getting Vitor down for a long, grueling night..

    Or we could see Hendo catch him with one of those looping hooks and get another knockout victory..

    Then again, this fight isn’t even official yet, so I guess I’ll wait to see if it’s actually happening before I analyze any further :)

    Oh, and I think Franklin would take a split decision..

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    It’s just the way that he disposed of Matt Lindland so fast that makes me think he’s got a lot of advantages to “catching” anyone at this point. Great analytical study though. I still say Tito though against Franklin

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Henderson barring his last fight has not been all that impressive since coming over to the ufc. the way he gassed against silva in the first fight had Travis Lutter written all over it. I think combine his age with the cut to 185 and you have a guy that will gas out against anybody that can hang with him through two rounds. If you just looked at their last fights hendo looked great but fought a less talented guy. Vitor on the other hand destroyed a olympic silver medalist in wrestling, in under 1 minute. Now Lindland is no slouch and I would bet he has a better takedown than Hendo. It still comes down to who exicutes on fight night but I would still take Vitor now over Henderson.

  • Rich S. says:

    Hendo didn’t gas against Silva. Silva gassed Hendo. That’s something Silva’s leg and body shots do very well.

    Hendo DOES tend to gas in or during the 3rd round, but he still manages to do what he did in the first and second rounds..

    And I’m amazed that you haven’t been impressed with Hendo since his move to the UFC.. He’s one of the VERY FEW that has actually done great since moving here.

    He impressed the hell out of me in the Jackson fight. He never quit, and was constantly a threat in that fight.

    And frankly, he did about as good as anyone CAN do against Silva right now..

    After the Silva fight he kicked it into high gear.. He won a very hard fought decision over Rousimar Palhares.. Both guys went full force and full pace, and I honestly believe that Toquinho would’ve beaten any other Middleweight that night..

    And some people may think the Franklin fight was controversial, but I thought Hendo controlled the fight and wasn’t surprised at all that he won..

    The Bisping fight speaks for itself..

    Yes, Dan Henderson is 39 years old, but he is very well a contender in the Middleweight division.. I’m sure he’s improving his cardio, and I’ve yet to see any signs of his chin weakening..

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I dont think his chin will ever be weak, But when I first saw him fight years ago in the ufc and though he never got koed he did get knocked down quite a few tomes, by either Alan Goes or Carlos Newton. I thought back then he couldnt handle these types of fights. Boy was I wrong on that one.
    Rich S you are right about him looking good for a pride guy coming over, I would say Rampage looks the best so far but Dan is a very close second without a doubt.

  • shotokai_ says:

    Anyone that thinks Belfort would beat Hendo is deluded. And someone said Tito over Hendo, you f*cking kiddin’ me? I didn’t bother to read all the comments but the two above this one are about right. He would crush Belfort, Ortiz and decision Franklin again, probably, I don’t even like him that much as an MMA fighter, but come on, lets be realistic.

  • shotokai_ says:

    “Henderson barring his last fight has not been all that impressive since coming over to the ufc. the way he gassed against silva in the first fight had Travis Lutter written all over it. I think combine his age with the cut to 185 and you have a guy that will gas out against anybody that can hang with him through two rounds. If you just looked at their last fights hendo looked great but fought a less talented guy. Vitor on the other hand destroyed a olympic silver medalist in wrestling, in under 1 minute. Now Lindland is no slouch and I would bet he has a better takedown than Hendo. It still comes down to who exicutes on fight night but I would still take Vitor now over Henderson.”

    Sorry fanoftna33 but, aside from being a “fanoftna”, there are several other misjudgments you are committing to. To compare Dan Henderson to Travis Lutter is ludicrous, really, enough said. He didn’t looked gassed against Silva, at least not from a fans perspective, and although he may have said he felt “flat” afterwords – I don’t really see how you can say that he “gassed”. He went 5 hard rounds with Rampage not long after, cut aside, the guy clearly has cardio. Vitor did KO an Olympic silver medalist but he caught him on the feet, where Lindland has next to no skills. Please don’t make it seem like, or think, Vitor exercised any other part of his game outside of striking – and so whether his takedown is better than Hendersons or not is irrelevant to that fight (and others). It’s “execUte”, and I honestly think Henderson is a league above Belfort at the moment; Belfort has done nothing in the last few years (look at who he has beat since competing at ufc 51) to make me think otherwise.

  • s00nertp says:

    this is a sweet card now! Hendo vs Belfort!! yesssssss! the winner of that definately deserves ANderson Silva. Belfort has been looking great lately!

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    I still think it’s shotty to not give Hendo his rematch with Silva. Why the hell have him fight Franklin? Franklin’s going to 205…… To STAY!! Let Dan stay at 185. Eventually we’ll see Hendo & Wany II. That may not do anything for anyone, but I’d like to see it

    shotokai_ The last post you wrote was hilarious

  • shotokai_ says:

    Sh*t I was wrecked, don’t remember doing it. My fragile state can’t handle whats going down in the world of MMA at the moment.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Next thing you know it’s going to come to a screeching halt b/c Nany Pelosi will come up with some BS legislation…..

    (Sh!t!!! Must find wood to knock on!!!)

  • metalmulisha says:

    s00nertp says “Hendo vs Belfort!! yesssssss!” Go watch the first one, and see how much you want a rematch after watching that fight.

    ozz_the_powerful says “Eventually we’ll see Hendo & Wany II.”

    You mean III.

    And I wanted to add after reading the comments above it’s interesting how many people have new found optimism in Tito Ortiz becoming a contender again now that he’s made amends with Dana and the UFC. I wonder how many of these same people would have declared him washed up and irrelevant had he signed a contract with Strikeforce or another promotion. It’s interesting how comments regarding Tito have changed so much compared to when he was feuding with Dana and to now with him being in good standing with Dana and the UFC again.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Yeah, III. Must have been too crazy with the keyboard. Sorry. Thought that’s what I put.

    I kinda thought the same thing too, about all the optimism. I will tell you this though, I MYSELF have never been on the Tito’s washed up bandwagon. I’ve been a fan ever since he made his debut. On this site it seems that there isn’t reall an issue with fighter bashing and whatnot. People seem to be a bit more leniant. There’s one site in particular though that takes it to a whole new level. That’s exactly why I left it.

    As far as getting excited about Hendo & Belfort, why not? Was it not you that told me the Silva that beat Jackson Twice is not the same, and vice versa? (Sorry if it’s not, but I’m not about to wade through all the comments to find out) I’m certain the same thing can be applied here. That’s a fight I, and a lot of other people, would like to see.

  • edub says:

    Hey ShotoKai:

    I believe Im being completely realistic in saying Tito would win. Hes bigger and stronger. He has beating great opponents in his career. Hendo has a history of trouble with bigger wrestlers/grapplers.

    Im pretty surprised at how many of you guys would write Tito off so quickly in that fight.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    if toto fights hendo we would probably get a classic wrestler vs wrestler stand up war, whic i think would be in hendo’s favor.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Sorry I meant to write Tito, its still early.

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Toto? ROFLMFAO!!!!

    Sorry, had to. You left the door open.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I was expecting a yellow brick road ref.

  • edub says:

    What would you guys say about another potential 185 lb matchup?

    Vitor vs. Wand II

  • ozz_the_powerful says:

    Wanderlei just got to 185. Well, 195, but I wouldn’t want to see his next fight against an opponent like that. I’d like him to get a win, get comfortable, let him get used to the weight drop.

    Wanderlei really isn’t in title contention at the moment. The #1 contender fight should be Vitor & Henderson. That’s a fight I’d like to see, to see who gets pitted up against Anderson Silva

  • fanoftna33 says:

    That would be exciting edub, thats a match up i think would be a great comeback for vitor, if he won or a huge statement at 185 for wanderlei.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    how about vitor as the winner of marquadt vs maia, thoes two fights will be great.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I think nate will take maia next month just because of his superior stand up and wrestling. That should get him 1 fight away from a title shot.

  • redwire says:

    Has this been substantiated in any way? I for one posted this as a ‘wish’ on a couple of different sites a couple of days ago, including this 5oz:

    Also, I’d like to point out that the Hendo/Franklin fight was never pulled from the UFC site. It was actually never on it in the first place. That in and of itself isn’t anything new – they’re notoriously slow about updating it.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Until its announced it is all speculation. But mma sites like this are usually way ahead of the ufc when announcing fights.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    If prtiz has his wrestling back up to par he could be trouble for franklin. Although he looked good against hendo he still has a average sprawl. Luckily against Tito he probably would not have to worry about getting ko’ed.

  • Patrickk says:

    First off, Belfort would not KO Henderson. Again, look at Henderson’s resume. Rampage couldn’t even knock him out.

    Franklin could do nothing to him either. Not saying Franklin has KO power, but what did he really do to Henderson that fight??? Not much at all except some good counter kicks.

    I would love to see Belfort vs. Henderson, so it could show you Belfort fans that he’s not up to par with Hendo or any of the top 5 in whichever weight class he decides to go to in the UFC.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    no way belfort is not in the top 5 middleweights in the ufc right have
    #1 hendo
    #2 marquardt
    #3 okami
    #4 Maia
    #5 Bisping
    I dont see vitor having much trouble getting to 4 and maybe 3 the top few would all be good fights and could be seen as a bit of a toss up.

  • manny says:

    Hell Yeah, I recently mentioned I lived in dallas and was planning on skipping the once in a life time to see the ufc live. Now if the rumors are true, I will be watching Tito win his comeback fight and Hendo Win!

  • fanoftna33 says:

    These fights are not confirmed yet manny.

  • edub says:

    My MW top five in the UFC:
    1. Anderson
    2. Hendo
    3. Okami
    4. Marquardt
    5. Maia

    Im not gonna lie I see Vitor having a lot of trouble with all 5 except Maia.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    vitor va marquardt would be the best fight up there. I think he would take Okami though pretty quickly.

  • edub says:

    Depends on what type of gameplay Okami came in with IMO. He has good takedowns with excellent top control so if he got him down it might be dec city for him.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    He is a good wrestler so yeah I could see a ud, but it would be a good fight.

  • metalmulisha says:

    With all the Henderson rumors with UFC 103 against either Franklin or Belfort I think it’s a safe assumption the Maia/Marquardt winner will be the next challenger for Silva at 185.
    IMO As long as he has his cardio right Denis Kang could be a contender at middleweight.

  • Jstew3785 says:

    How could you have Bisping in your top 5 after UFC 100? I’d say the top 5 MW’s are
    #1. Obviously, Anderson Silva
    #2. Nate Marquardt
    #3. Demian Maia
    #4. Dan Henderson
    #5. Yushin Okami

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I had him there if you dont count anderson silve he is the champion so you need a top 5 list of challengers.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    Now that I am rethinking a bit maybe palharis would be a solid #5.

  • Jstew3785 says:

    Gotcha. If they really do sign Vitor Belfort I would have him at #5 instead of Okami.

  • cocoonofhorror says:

    let Vitor prove himself with someone like Leben or Belcher 1st, IMO.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    he would ruin thoes two


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