By Kelsey Mowatt
Randy Couture has rarely had a fight over the last few years that wasn’t surrounded by questions regarding whether or not his next bout would be his last. Well, despite having won three straight fights heading into his April 30 tilt with fellow, former light-heavyweight champ Lyoto Machida, the ageless, 47 year-old wonder will almost certainly hang up the gloves after UFC 129. (Pictured: Couture punching Chuck Liddell) The 19-10 fighter was quoted saying on the official UFC website:
“I want to go out on my terms and decide when enough is enough, and I think that time is come,” said Couture. “I’ve had a great camp, everything is spot on, I can’t wait until next week. It’s a fight I’ve been looking forward to for a long time, and it’s finally gonna happen. But it’s time to focus on the other things I’ve got going on in my life after this fight.”
Of course, Couture has demonstrated time and time again throughout his storied career that it’s unwise to count him out against any opponent. Couture could score a victory over Machida at UFC 129, a man that until last year had gone undefeated and was cited frequently in best pound-for-pound discussions. Although a win over Machida would unquestionably reassert Couture in the title shot mix, it appears as though the decorated fighter isn’t interested in making another title run.
“That was one of the things that I struggled with because I am as healthy as ever,” said Couture while discussing the fact he continues to perform despite the fact he’s approaching 50. “I feel great and I absolutely have the ability to continue to compete at this level. But I don’t want to wait until I have those issues to think about and weigh into training camp or a fight. I don’t want to wait until I have that injury and have doctors telling me ‘hey look, you can’t fight anymore.”
While the UFC will soon welcome the promotion’s biggest event in history, when it heads to a sold out Rogers Centre in Toronto later this month, it will also evidently celebrate the career of one of its greatest competitors.