The story of Tito Ortiz getting punched out by convicted bank robber Lee Murray during an alleyway altercation after UFC 38 has grown into one of MMA's most beloved bits of folklore. The most famous version — relayed second-hand from a drunken Pat Miletich and published in Matt Hughes's autobiography Made in America — ends with Tito Ortiz getting starched by "like, a five-punch combo," then boot-stomped.
On this Friday's installment of Michael Schiavello's HDNet interview series The Voice Vs..., Ortiz gets to tell his side of the tale.
Mic hael Schiavello: “I want to talk about something that’s become part of MMA folklore, MMA urban myth which I want to get you to clarify. 2002… London… Tony Fryklund, Matt Hughes, Pat Miletich, Tito Ortiz, and a man named Lee Murray got into a street fight where apparently Tito Ortiz got knocked out by Lee Murray.”
Tito Ortiz: “Not true. At all. One of my buddies got beat up, was getting stomped in the concrete outside and I came to his rescue. Me, Chuck Liddell, and Damien started to fight… One of the guys sucker punched our friend Damien, I mean my friend Bo, dropped him on the door, the cab ran over his arm, and Lee Murray was in there. Lee Murray took a swing at me, missed, I took a swing at him, I clinched him, I knee’d him… he broke away, he started running away, I started chasing into him, and he turns around and stops and plants his feet, I go to stop and I slide right into him, he clipped me, dropped me, and I popped right back up. Cops came, broke everybody apart. One of the cops said he was squirt me in the face with mace, I said go ahead because by then I was already snapped, I didn’t give a [expletive], I was surviving, survival skills. I was never unconscious at the time, in my whole life I’ve never been unconscious and I never will go unconscious and… but I think those stories are fabricated a lot to try to build, uh, Lee Murray up but God looks over all of us and now he’s doing a 10-year prison sentence, so karma’s a bitch, huh?”
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