Search icon


12th Jan 2017

Chael Sonnen recounting promise he never kept to late father may be his most heartbreaking moment ever

Tough watch

Ben Kiely

It’s one more for the win column, one more for the highlight reel and one more for… wait, is Chael Sonnen still the bad guy?

Any fans of mixed martial arts will know what to expect when they see Chael Sonnen appear on screen.

We’re used to seeing the Bellator star embody his American Gangster persona. He has a penchant for blessing our eardrums with his artfully constructed trash talk that’s been manufactured specifically to entertain the masses and draw more eyes to his fights.

As great as he is at talking smack, his unparalleled ability to tell captivating stories may be his greatest talent. The man’s a raconteur. Often he’ll combine the trash-talk with his tales to result in some wonderful moments of comedy.

A prime example of this is his classic rib-tickler about the Nogueira brothers supposedly mistaking a bus for a horse the first time they set foot in the States.

That was back in the year of our lord, 2000-and-Chael, but a lot of time has passed since then and things have dramatically changed in Sonnen’s life.

No longer is he one of the biggest stars in the UFC. Now, he’s the biggest superstar in Bellator after somehow getting out of his contract with their main rivals, a move which nobody seems to be able to figure out how he pulled off.

His first fight for the promotion will be against fellow legend Tito Ortiz at Bellator 170, an event which is bound to be a huge hit solely because of the hype around his promotional debut. The first promo for the epic battle dropped recently and it’s sure to convince anyone who was on the fence about watching the fight to drop everything and tune in.

The promo ends with a rare moment when the Gangster from West Linn breaks free from his media persona while recounting the only promise he never kept, which he made to his father before he died.

“When my Dad died the last thing I ever said to him. I said to him I’m going to beat Tito Ortiz and I’m going to win the world championship. That’s the only promise I never… that’s the only promise I never kept.”

“But I’m going to make it right on January 21.”

Fight sold.