Tito Ortiz recently told a radio show that he is ready to go and is waiting for Bellator to give him a fight, but Bellator MMA Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney says that Ortiz has not been cleared by doctors at this time.
During Rebney’s appearance on Tuesday’s edition of “The MMA Report Live,” he went into detail about why Ortiz had to pull out of his fight against Quinton “Rampage” Jackson last year.
“Last November when he pulled out of the fight with Rampage, we has a lot of conversations with his neck and spine specialist,” Rebney said. “Who told us that if he fought and was dropped on his head in the wrong way or neck in the wrong way, he could be paralyzed and never walk again.”
“I took that insanely seriously. I took it for exactly for what it was, which was looking at a world class athlete with two young kids, whom has made his living for almost the last twenty years stepping foot in the cage and realizing that he could end up in a chair for the rest of his life.”
For Rebney and the management team at Bellator to book Ortiz in a fight, he will have to be cleared after going through “series of comprehensive medical exams.” If he is given clearance by the medical team, Bellator will book Ortiz in a fight.
“Tito is going through a series of comprehensive medical exams to make absolutely sure, without a question of doubt that when and if he steps into that cage he is in no greatest risk that Rampage, Chandler, Alvarez, Mo, or anybody else,” Rebney stated. “If that comes back, based on experts doing analysis, he will fight. But until that happens, I have no option and we have no option but to hold off until those comprehensive test are done.”
Rebney is hopeful that the comprehensive medical exams can take place in the next thirty days. Getting all of Ortiz’s medical records in one place has been an issue at this time but once this happens, a specialist will review them and make a decision.
“He has not been cleared yet and my hope is for his sake and everyone’s that he is cleared in the next month or so and if that happens, great. He will get back in there, no questions asked.”