Near the end of his career, Tito Ortiz veered away from the brash character he had cultivated early on to a softer, gentler Tito. He even changed his name from the unbearably long “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy,” to the shorter but much more arrogant “The People’s Champion.” It was a journey of self-discovery that spanned 15 years and saw a cocky, highly annoying kid become a somewhat less cocky, slightly less annoying man.
Through it all, Tito has always been outspoken when it came to fighter pay, and often boasted of planting the seeds of prosperity for future fighters. Then after retiring, he started a management company called Primetime 360 to help guide a new generation of fighters through the treacherous waters of contract negotiations with Dana White. Tito did pave the way, and now that he’s an “elder” in the MMA world, he not only wants to give something back, but he’ll call a mutha fucka out on some real shit too. Tito took to Twitter to school the young Jon Jones on just why he makes that long dough:
“I’m disappointed in u. When no one else had your back I did. The only reason u make the money u do is because I fought & spoke out when no other fighters would. The next time u are riding in your Bentley remember who fought for the fighters. If not u maybe riding in a truck.”
Note the language: “I’m disappointed in u.” That’s like as a kid when you would do something so reprehensible that your dad wouldn’t even give you the honor of the strap, but he’d tell you he was disappointed in you. Some feel that hurt even more than the beating. Personally, I find that to be a crock of shit. I’ll take a disappointed father any day over a thick leather belt, but that’s just me.
By going the disappointment route though, Tito is overplaying this whole “elder” thing. Advice, check. Wisdom, check. How to maintain sexual masculinity knowing your wife has slept with thousands of men? Check. But disappointment? I doubt Jon Jones gives two shits that he disappointed Tito, although he should thank him for being such a pain in Dana White’s ass over the years because whatever one’s feelings about Tito, he did help plant those seeds, and guys like Jones are enjoying the harvest.