Bellator president Scott Coker announced on Friday night’s card that former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz and Stephan Bonnar will square off on November 15.
The event will take place in San Diego, California and air opposite UFC 180 on Spike TV.
Ortiz made his long-awaited Bellator debut earlier this year, stopping middleweight champion Alexander Shlemenko. Bonnar, meanwhile, announced his retirement after a bout with Anderson Silva – he failed the post-fight drug test after.
“This fight is as personal as it gets,” Ortiz said. “I don’t dislike many people but I can honestly say I hate Stephan Bonnar. I’m not just going to beat Bonnar, I’m going to torture him. This fight is for my fans and the MMA world. Stephan Bonnar is a phony and I’m going to show the world he isn’t on the same level of a fighter as I am. The Huntington Beach Bad Boy is back for this fight because (expletive) Bonnar is getting a bad beating from me.”
Both Ortiz and Bonnar are in the UFC Hall of Fame.
“It’s a great honor to fight a former world champion and a true legend of the sport like Tito, his skills and accomplishments cannot be denied,” Bonnar said. “Unfortunately, his character certainly can. This is a guy, Tito Ortiz, who’s screwed over everyone that has supported and helped him throughout his career, and I have no mercy for a selfish, self-absorbed guy like Tito. I’m not going in there just to hit him on the chin and be done. That’s not what this fight is about.
“He’s going to suffer, I’m going to savor every minute I have in there with him. I’m going to close his eyes, punish his body, then take a step back, so I can do it some more.”
The card will also feature a rematch for the undisputed lightweight title, as Will Brooks meets Michael Chandler. Brooks won the interim title over Chandler earlier this year.
“I can’t wait to fight Chandler again and continue to progress from the last fight, Brooks said. “I feel that I found a weakness in his armor with the last fight, and came very close to breaking through and finishing him. I’m going to push him again, this time I’m going to break him, there will be no trilogy fight between Chandler and I.
“I’m going to finish what I started the first fight and expose him for what he is, a one dimensional fighter.”
Eddie Alvarez, who held the title, was allowed out of his contract to sign with the UFC. Chandler is a former lightweight champion who dropped the belt to Alvarez.
“I’m really excited about the opportunity to fight Will again,” Chandler said. “I believe I’m the better fighter than I showed last time and I look forward to getting my belt back in front of a huge San Diego crowd.”