Monday, February 8, 2010

Randy Gives Us Another Dandy

Randy Couture. The Natural. Captain American. All are names for the 46-year-old legend who still continues to put on high level performances with each appearance inside the octagon. After a two-fight skid with loses to Brock Lesnar and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, he returned to the light-heavyweight division and faced Brandon Vera. After an unimpressive, somewhat controversial decision victory over "The Truth," people began to wonder if The Natural still had it. At UFC 109: Relentless this past Saturday, Randy once again that he can still hang with the big boys.

In a fight that was originally scheduled to happen at UFC 17 (that's right, UFC 17!), Couture went to battle with fellow UFC Hall of Famer Mark Coleman. The two have been innovators of the sport and have won multiple championships. Needless to say, the nostalgia value of this fight was reason enough for a fan to buy the pay-per-view. After a loss to Mauricio "Shogun" Rua in his return fight to the UFC, Coleman beat Steffan Bonner at UFC 100, his first win at light-heavyweight. In this fight of old men, Couture looked more like a fighter in his twenties. He neutralized all of Coleman's takedown attempts, used sharp boxing to pick him apart on the feet and "dirty boxing" in the clinch to wear down Coleman in the first round. The second round offered more of the same. Couture eventually rocked Coleman, took his back, and submitted him with a rear naked choke.

What this fight proved more than anything was how these two legend's careers are going in different directions at this point. Couture seems primed to make a final (though with Randy you never know) run at the light-heavyweight title. Couture has the knowledge and tools to give "The Dragon" fits, so it's a fight a lot of fans want to see. On the other side, Coleman seems to be on his last legs. His stand-up looked atrocious, he seemed to gas out midway through the first round, and just didn't seem like he had anything to offer Couture. He and Tito Ortiz apparently got into an altercation after the post-conference, and Coleman has stated he wants to fight Tito after having to withdraw from their UFC 106 date due to injury. This would be nothing but a novelty fight, and, if it happens, win or lose Coleman should probably hang it up. Who knows, maybe there are more "legends" fights to be had. Someone should give Dan Severn a call...

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