Vancouver Canucks enforcer Darcy Hordichuk is tough by NHL standards, but by UFC standards he admits he has a long way to go.

Hordichuk was on hand to watch his buddy Chuck Liddell go through his workout yesterday at the Sheraton Wall Centre in Vancouver in preparation for UFC 115. Two summers ago, Hordichuk travelled to Liddell’s gym in California to train with “the Iceman” — it was a huge eye-opener.

“I used to do a lot of medicine ball work around 20 to 25 pounds. You go to these guys’ camps and the girls are training with 90-pound balls,” he said.

Hordichuk was hoping to learn a little something from the UFC legend, and after he explained to Liddell and his trainer John Hackleman “you can’t just kick their feet out and hit him with three or four elbows,” they were able to get down to business.

So despite being “Liddell’s punching bag,” he improved his punching technique and brought it back to the NHL.

The UFC is very popular among NHL players, Hordichuk said. He and up to eight other Canucks will attend UFC 115 — some are even planning to fly in from out of town. Even though the Canucks are pro athletes themselves, the strength and athleticism are inspiring, especially for Hordichuk.

“I just want to pack half the punch Chuck Liddell does.”

Hordichuk is picking his friend to win by knockout in the second round against Rich (Ace) Franklin at Saturday’s main event.