UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz Teases Possible Return to MMA

Damon Martin@@DamonMartinContributor IJuly 10, 2013

UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz retired from fighting almost exactly a year ago, but the itch to compete is already burning inside the former light heavyweight champion.

Ortiz walked away from the sport after going 16-11-1 during his career, but his decision was mostly based on his body being riddled with injuries over the past few years.

Knee injuries, back surgeries and several other ailments kept Ortiz on the doctor's table more than in the Octagon, so he called it a career following his loss to Forrest Griffin at UFC 148 in 2012.

Now with his body starting to feel better and his injuries healed, Ortiz teased a potential comeback on Twitter this week.

Following that, Ortiz came back with a message about his current status as a free agent with another tease that he will have some important decisions to make in the near future.

Interesting to note that Ortiz tagged Viacom in his Twitter message, obviously pointing at their MMA promotion Bellator, which could also mean he has interest in possibly coaching during an upcoming season of the Fight Master reality show.

If Ortiz does decide to come back to fighting, his return will likely be met with two possible reactions.

First, Ortiz is still a very popular fighter who carries a big fanbase that has supported him for years. On the other side, the former UFC champion closed out his career going 1-7-1 over his last nine fights and didn't stack up well against the current crop of light heavyweight talent.

There's also no telling if the UFC would even be interested in bringing Ortiz back into the fold after his career closed out with three losses in a row. It's no secret Oritz and UFC president Dana White have not been best friends over the years, but ultimately the company's decision would more likely come down to Ortiz's value to the promotion.

As far as other suitors like Bellator, that could be a possibility given their desire to capitalize on big names in the industry, especially for a reality show like Fight Master.

The first season is just getting underway with coaches such as Randy Couture, Greg Jackson, Frank Shamrock and Joe Warren. Adding Ortiz to the mix for Season 2 could be interesting, although what he offers in terms of fight potential remains to be seen.

Damon Martin is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report.