Didn't think we'd see this one coming ... but Tito Ortiz just fired off some COMPLIMENTS about his bitter rival Dana White -- praising the UFC boss for signing CM Punk.
For the record, Ortiz and White have been feuding for YEARS -- and the two got thiiis close to fighting it out in the ring back in 2007.
But despite the feud, Tito knows a good business decision when he sees it ... and told TMZ Sports that signing former WWE champ CM Punk is a solid move for the UFC.
"They're making money," Ortiz said ... "It's great for them."
The 39-year-old fighter also updated us on his own career -- saying he's finally calling it quits next year ... but there's one thing he wants to accomplish before he retires.
Check out the clip ...
CM Punk in the UFC?
'I Wouldn't Mind Talking to Him'
12/4/2014 10:40 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
UFC honcho Dana White tells TMZ Sports he's definitely interested in having a conversation with CM Punk about fighting in the octagon ... now that Punk's no longer with the WWE.
White was at an event in NYC to celebrate the new UFC-Reebok partnership when he told us he likes Punk and knows he's a fan of MMA -- and would be open to having a conversation with the 36-year-old about joining the organization.
"I don't know if he can fight or anything like that ," White said ... "but sure, I wouldn't mind talking to CM Punk."
As for rumors about Brock Lesnar wanting to get back into MMA at the end of his contract with the WWE -- White says, "If and when his deal if up with them and he wants to fight, I'm, sure he'll call me."
Stay tuned ...
UFC Champ Anthony Pettis
I'd Kick Putin's Ass
So What If He's a 9th Degree Black Belt!?
12/2/2014 12:45 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
UFC champ Anthony Pettis is a 3rd degree black belt in taekwondo. Vladimir Putin is a 9th.
So, who would win in a street fight? Don't bet on red.
Pettis -- who's fighting Gilbert Melendez at UFC 181 this weekend -- was out in NYC this week when he told us the 6 degrees of martial arts separation wouldn't matter if push ever came to shove.
For the record, here's how the tale of the tape would read ...
UFC Lightweight Champion
3rd degree Taekwondo black belt
9th degree Taekwondo black belt
The clip is awesome -- Pettis also tells us he spends time training at the same center as NFL superstar J.J. Watt ... and raves about how the guy CRUSHES weights in the gym.
The Rock Would Kick My Ass!!
11/22/2014 12:15 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Anderson Silva knows his limits in the ring ... and those limits are about 6'5, 260 lbs ... telling TMZ Sports that Dwyane "The Rock" Johnson would beat the crap out of the UFC legend if they fought.
Silva was out in L.A. when we asked the man who Dana White called "the greatest mixed martial artist of all time" if his octagon expertise would be enough to take down the freak of nature that is The Rock.
Watch the video -- Anderson wants no part of Mr. Johnson, not hesitating in the least when we drop the question on him.
FYI -- Anderson also (kinda) picks a winner between Mayweather and Pacquiao (like it's ever gonna happen) and tells us who's hotter out of Beyonce and Rihanna.
Long live the Queen ...
Ex-UFC Fighter Matthew Riddle
Training to Be a Pro Wrestler
11/3/2014 12:25 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Former UFC fighter Matthew Riddle -- who was fired for smoking weed last year -- is getting guidance on his new career path from a seasoned vet ... and we got the headlocked proof.
Riddle recently started training to become a pro wrestler at the Monster Factory in New Jersey ... where former WWE wrestler The Blue Meanie is keeping a close eye on his work.
Meanie tells us Riddle has been doing great in his first few days of training ... and Matthew is really enthusiastic about learning the craft.
We already came up with a nickname for him: The Riddler.
Sorry, it was too easy.
UFC Fighter Cody Gibson
Socked Hard In Face
In Crazy Bar Fight [Video]
10/6/2014 12:45 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
File Under: "You Know You're In Trouble When" ... you punch a guy in the face as hard as you can -- AND HE DOESN'T GO DOWN ... because the guy you punched is a UFC fighter.
That's exactly what happened in Vegas -- when 27-year-old UFC star Cody "The Renegade" Gibson (12-5) got into a standoff with some dude with a death wish at a bar in Downtown Las Vegas.
It all went down last week ... after Cody's last-second defeat at UFC 178 to Manny Gamburyan. Despite the loss, Cody still felt like going out ... and that's when he got into it with another bar patron.
Sources at the bar tell us ... the two guys got into an arguing match that escalated quickly -- but when it almost came time to fight ... Cody tried to WARN the guy he's a professional brawler.
In the video, you can actually hear Cody tell the other man "Google me, bitch!"
But the other guy didn't listen ... and instead of googling, he SOCKED CODY IN THE FACE.
Cody was stunned ... but didn't go down ... and responded by tackling the guy to the ground.
Security quickly rushed in ... but no one was arrested or seriously injured ... which is good for the dude in the blue shirt, considering Cody is constantly training in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, boxing and Muay Thai fighting.
Bottom line -- props to Cody for not killing the guy.
UFC Ring Girls
Battling In Out In Vegas
9/29/2014 7:14 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
It wasn't just the men of the UFC who went toe-to-toe in Vegas this weekend ... the women were also squaring off ... in the Vegas nightclubs.
Question is ...
UFC Star Joe Riggs
My Gunshot Wound Healed
Check Out My New Scars
9/24/2014 12:25 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
UFC fighter Joe Riggs might be part mutant -- 'cause check out how well his gunshot wounds healed up in just THREE SHORT MONTHS!!
As we previously reported, Riggs was cleaning his pistol back in July when it accidentally fired -- sending a bullet ripping through his hand and thigh. It was bloody ... and could've been career-ending.
But as you can see in the pics, everything seemed to heal nicely -- and Joe just announced that he's booked his very first UFC fight since the incident.
The fight is set for Dec. 13th -- and Riggs is all set to take on Ben Saunders ... who, to our knowledge, has zero gunshot wounds.
We included the original bloody gunshot pictures below ... but be warned, they're pretty gnarly.
Fires Thiago Silva
After Gun Video Surfaces
9/19/2014 6:41 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
The UFC has fired Thiago Silva ... again ... after footage of the fighter holding a GUN and accusing his wife of hiding a man in the house surfaced online.
The footage was shot by Silva's estranged wife Thaysa in early 2014 ... when Thiago pulled out a pistol and began threatening her because he believed she had another man in their home.
At one point in the video, Thaysa says she's recording so officials would have proof in case he killed her that day.
Of course, Silva was recently let off the hook in Florida -- where he was accused of pulling a gun on Thaysa at a martial arts studio and threatening to kill her in February -- because prosecutors said they didn't have enough evidence to get a conviction.
UFC honcho Dana White had initially banned Silva from fighting in the octogon ever again ... but reinstated him when charges were dropped.
Now, with this new footage coming to light ... White has fired Silva again. We're guessing Thiago has finally run out of of second chances.
Thaysa told a Brazilian media outlet that she has moved on from Thiago -- and is now living in Abu Dhabi with "a real man by my side."
CALLS OUT RONDA
Shut Up & Fight Me Already!
9/19/2014 10:37 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox is firing back at UFC champ Ronda Rousey -- telling her to cut out the excuses about "bone structure" ... and FIGHT HER ALREADY!!!
Fox -- who was born a man -- is clearly upset with Rousey for saying it's "unfair" for Fallon to fight against naturally born women because she has a biological advantage.
FYI -- Fox beat her last female opponent so badly, the challenger suffered a broken orbital bone, needed 7 staples in her head and may have had a concussion.
But Fox says Rousey's argument is BS ... saying, "I really wish Ronda would stop with the ridiculous bone structure arguments. That was so last year."
She added, "[Rousey] should tell her boss to put me in that octagon over there at UFC."
In her statement, which she posted on Facebook, Fox continues ... "I'm quite sure that there are quite a few female MMA fighters who have guts to fight another skilled woman without peeing their panties and saying 'No, I wouldn't fight her!'"
"I think they may be a little more mentally tough and say, 'I'll fight a trans woman, just like I'll fight a lesbian woman or a black woman Etc.'"
Fox says certain fighters use the "bone density" argument to "possibly save face" if they lose to her in the ring.
UFC honcho Dana White addressed the Fox issue back in March -- and said she wasn't UFC-ready (skill-wise) ... but said the bigger decision was up to the athletic commissions.
Fallon Fox Has Unfair Advantage
But I'd Still Beat Her Ass!
9/19/2014 6:10 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Ronda Rousey tells TMZ Sports ... she believes transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox has an "unfair advantage" over naturally born women -- but she'd still kick her ass anyway.
Rousey was at LAX when we asked about Fallon -- a post-op transgender who was born a man and now fights with the women.
FYI -- Fox has won her last two fights ... and beat her last opponent so badly, she reportedly suffered a concussion, a broken orbital bone and required 7 staples in her head (video below).
Rousey -- the reigning female UFC champ -- says she's done a lot of research on the situation ... and ultimately feels Fox needs to be fighting with the men -- especially with the damage she's inflicting.
But when we asked if Ronda would be afraid to get in the Octagon against Fox, Rousey makes it clear ... she fears NO ONE ... Y chromosome or no Y chromosome.
The Secret To The Perfect Brazilian Butt Is ...
9/13/2014 12:15 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
UFC badass Lyoto Machida is about to get to the bottom of a mystery -- a bottom mystery -- 'cause the pro face breaker just told TMZ Sports why women in his native Brazil have such nice ... assets.
Machida was out in Beverly Hills with his smokin' hot wife when our camera guy asked the question that women all over the world want to know -- how do Brazilian chicks get their mystical booty powers???
Check the video -- Machida gives our camera guy two reasons Brazilian chicks are so bootylicious.
Somewhere, Jen Selter is nervous ...
UFC Star Nick Diaz
Popped for DUI
Allegedly Tries To Puke Out Evidence
9/12/2014 3:22 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
UFC superstar Nick Diaz was arrested for DUI in California last week -- and cops say to make matters worse, he attempted to "destroy evidence" by trying to make himself puke.
We've learned ... Diaz was pulled over around 2AM on Sept. 6th in Lodi, CA for a routine traffic violation -- and during the stop, cops say they noticed Diaz appeared to be wasted.
Diaz was taken to a nearby jail -- where cops say he went to the bathroom and attempted to make himself vomit in what seems like an effort to get the booze out of his system.
For the record, cops say Diaz was unable to pull his own trigger -- and never actually barfed.
He was eventually hit with 4 charges -- misdemeanor DUI, driving on a suspended license, obstructing a police investigation and destroying evidence.
Diaz -- who's supposed to fight Anderson Silva in January -- was eventually released on his own recognizance.
The UFC issued a statement saying they are aware of the situation and are gathering the facts.