The UFC Hall of Fame currently honors just nine individuals from the 20 year history of the league:
1. Royce Gracie inducted November 21, 2003
2. Ken Shamrock inducted November 21, 2003
3. Dan Severn inducted April 16, 2005
4. Randy Couture inducted June 24, 2006
5. Mark Coleman inducted March 1, 2008
6. Chuck Liddell inducted July 11, 2009
7. Charles Lewis Jr inducted July 11, 2009
8. Matt Hughes inducted May 29, 2010
9. Tito Ortiz inducted July 7, 2012
In May UFC president Dana White announced that two more fighters would be added, at the UFC Fan Expo preceeding UFC 162 this Summer.
It is widely regarded that the most important fight in the sport's history, and one of the very best, was The Ultimate Fighter 1 finals, between Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonnar, on 9 April 2005. Griffin took the unaninous decision, but the performance by both fighters was so extraordinary, that the future of the show - the UFC's last ditch, double down bet on mixed martial arts - was assured.
Griffin went on to win the UFC light heavyweight championship. Bonnar went 8-5 over the next seven years, including losses to Jon Jones and Anderson Silva.
The bond between the two is such that in 2012 Bonnar named his first born son "Griffin."
However, the summer induction was not without controversy, with many fans saying there were more deserving options. Now UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz says Griffin deserves to be in, Bonnar he is not so sure about, and that the fans should decide who is in.
Ortiz's reservations about Bonnar
"Forrest deserves it," Ortiz told MMAjunkie.com. "He beat me, and he beat some other really good guys. He was a world champion. He had some great fights. I think he deserves it.
"As far as Stephan, I have nothing against the guy, but you've got to be a world champion, I think, to be in the Hall of Fame."
"That's a big honor to be in the Hall of Fame. It means you had a significance in the sport at one time or another. You look at that, and the Forrest and Stephan fight was a big step for the UFC, so do they deserve it? Possibly. But can one fight get you in the Hall of Fame? I don't know. I guess that's Dana's decision."
Ortiz later indicated an alternate to White decision making.
"I think it should be a fan vote," said Ortiz. "That's what it should really come down to. The fans should consider how much they've known the person, how much they've watched them fight and so forth and just how much the fighter had significance in the sport in general. I think that's the answer."
Late in the week Griffin said he would consider a comeback. Now Tito too said the same, and wants it to be Griffin. The pair fought three times, with Griffin winning the final two. The clash was Tito's retirment fight, but when it was over, Griffin grabbed the mic and spoke to the crowd, earning Tito's continuing ire.
"Forrest, he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, for sure," said Ortiz. "I had my bad blood against him in our last fight against each other, but he was on testosterone, and there's a big difference there. He wasn't in his right mind, of course, and he reacted the way he thought he should react at the time. I know he was apologetic because of it, but of course I'm still pissed about it.
"If I did come back for one fight, I think that would be the fight I would come back for. That's just the competitive side of me. I feel like I built my whole life on respect, but the way he disrespected me after my last fight, I was just kind of taken aback by it, like, 'Why is this guy doing this right now?'"
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