Some people say his fists should legally be considered "deadly weapons" ... but UFC legend Chuck Liddell says he won't let that stop him from defending himself in a dangerous situation outside of the ring.
The Iceman was out in Calabasas when we asked about the notion that trained fighters should always turn the other cheek in a street brawl because if he fights back ... he could be hit with more serious criminal charges.
FYI -- back in 2012, MMA fighter Fernando Rodrigues was involved in a road rage incident -- and the judge ruled that his hands and feet should be considered "deadly weapons" because of his extensive fighting experience.
But Liddell told us, "I still have a right to defend myself ... and uh, don't forget ... I'm a fighter first ... so I WILL protect myself."