|Nickname||The Natural, Captain America|
|Weight Class||Light Heavyweight (205 lbs.) / Heavyweight|
|Height||6' 2" (188 cm)|
|Birth Date||June 22, 1963|
|Fighting Out Of||Las Vegas, Nevada|
|Randy Couture Pictures||Couture's Official Site|
Randy Duane Couture is an American mixed martial artist, Greco-Roman wrestler, actor, former collegiate wrestler, and the former Light Heavyweight and Heavyweight champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Couture is one of only two UFC fighters to have held a championship title in two different divisions (Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight) while in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (the other fighter being BJ Penn), as well as the only five-time champion in UFC history. Couture is a member of the UFC Hall of Fame, and many consider him to be the most popular fighter in MMA history.
Couture has been an Olympic wrestler alternate, and lived in Corvallis, Oregon throughout much of his career where he served as an assistant wrestling coach and a strength and conditioning coach for Oregon State University. He established Team Quest with Matt Lindland and Dan Henderson, a training camp for fighters, based out of Gresham, Oregon and headed by coach Robert Folis. In 2005 Couture moved to Las Vegas where he opened his own chain of gyms under the name Xtreme Couture, with additional locations in Vancouver, Washington, Wellington, Florida, Lombard, Illinois, and most recently Independence, Missouri and Toronto, Ontario. He currently trains at his Las Vegas-based gym. Couture also partnered with Bas Rutten in the opening of Legends Gym, located in Hollywood, California.
Couture is generally recognized as a clinch and ground-and-pound fighter who uses his wrestling ability to execute take downs, establish top position, and successively strike the opponent on the bottom. Couture has also displayed a variety of skills in Boxing, Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, submitting two opponents using different chokeholds. Couture is also the only athlete in UFC history to win a championship after becoming a Hall of Fame member and is the oldest title holder ever (in the UFC and MMA in general).
Along with Chuck Liddell, Couture is widely credited for bringing mixed martial arts into the mainstream of American pop culture and sports.
Couture's son, Ryan Couture, is also a mixed martial artist.
|Record||19 - 11 - 0 (Win – Loss – Draw)|
|Loss||Lyoto Machida||KO (Front Kick)||UFC 129: St. Pierre vs. Shields||4/30/2011||2||1:05|
|Win||James Toney||Submission (Arm Triangle Choke)||UFC 118: Edgar vs. Penn 2||8/28/2010||1||3:19||Heavyweight bout|
|Win||Mark Coleman||Submission (Rear Naked Choke)||UFC 109: Relentless||2/06/2010||2||1:09|
|Win||Brandon Vera||Decision (Unanimous)||UFC 105: Couture vs. Vera||11/14/2009||3||5:00||Return to Light Heavyweight; Became the oldest fighter to ever win a bout in the UFC|
|Loss||Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira||Decision (Unanimous)||UFC 102: Couture vs. Nogueira||8/29/2009||3||5:00||Won Fight of the Night Honors|
|Loss||Brock Lesnar||TKO (Punches)||UFC 91: Couture vs. Lesnar||11/15/2008||2||3:07||Lost UFC Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Gabriel Gonzaga||TKO (Punches)||UFC 74: Respect||8/25/2007||3||1:37||Defended UFC Heavyweight Championship; Won Fight of the Night Honors|
|Win||Tim Sylvia||Decision (Unanimous)||UFC 68: The Uprising||3/03/2007||5||5:00||Won UFC Heavyweight Championship|
|Loss||Chuck Liddell||KO (Punch)||UFC 57: Liddell vs. Couture 3||2/04/2006||2||1:28||For UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Mike Van Arsdale||Submission (Anaconda Choke)||UFC 54: Boiling Point||8/20/2005||3||0:52|
|Loss||Chuck Liddell||KO (Punches)||UFC 52: Couture vs. Liddell 2||4/16/2005||1||2:06||Lost UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Vitor Belfort||TKO (Doctor Stoppage)||UFC 49: Unfinished Business||8/21/2004||3||5:00||Won UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Loss||Vitor Belfort||TKO (Cut)||UFC 46: Supernatural||1/31/2004||1||0:49||Lost UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Tito Ortiz||Decision (Unanimous)||UFC 44: Undisputed||9/26/2003||5||5:00||Won UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Chuck Liddell||TKO (Punches)||UFC 43: Meltdown||6/06/2003||3||2:39||Won Interim UFC Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Loss||Ricco Rodriguez||Submission (Elbow)||UFC 39: The Warriors Return||9/27/2002||5||3:04||For UFC Heavyweight Championship (Vacant)|
|Loss||Josh Barnett||TKO (Punches)||UFC 36: Worlds Collide||3/22/2002||2||4:35||Lost UFC Heavyweight Championship; Barnett later tested positive for steroids|
|Win||Pedro Rizzo||TKO (Strikes)||UFC 34: High Voltage||11/02/2001||3||1:38||Defended UFC Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Pedro Rizzo||Decision (Unanimous)||UFC 31: Locked & Loaded||5/04/2001||5||5:00||Defended UFC Heavyweight Championship|
|Loss||Valentijn Overeem||Submission (Guillotine Choke)||Rings: King of Kings 2000 Final||2/24/2001||1||0:56|
|Win||Tsuyoshi Kohsaka||Decision (Unanimous)||Rings: King of Kings 2000 Final||2/24/2001||2||5:00|
|Win||Kevin Randleman||TKO (Strikes)||UFC 28: High Stakes||11/17/2000||3||4:13||Won UFC Heavyweight Championship|
|Win||Ryushi Yanagisawa||Decision (Majority)||Rings: King of Kings 2000 Block A||10/09/2000||2||5:00|
|Win||Jeremy Horn||Decision (Unanimous)||Rings: King of Kings 2000 Block A||10/09/2000||3||5:00|
|Loss||Mikhail Illoukhine||Submission (Kimura)||Rings: Rise 1st||3/20/1999||1||7:43|
|Loss||Enson Inoue||Submission (Armbar)||VTJ 1998: Vale Tudo Japan 1998||10/25/1998||1||1:39|
|Win||Maurice Smith||Decision||UFC Japan: Ultimate Japan 1||12/21/1997||1||21:00||Won UFC Heavyweight Championship; stripped of title due to contractual issues|
|Win||Vitor Belfort||TKO (Punches)||UFC 15: Collision Course||10/17/1997||1||8:16|
|Win||Steven Graham||TKO (Strikes)||UFC 13: The Ultimate Force||5/30/1997||1||3:13||Won UFC 13 Heavyweight Tournament|
|Win||Tony Halme||Submission (Rear Naked Choke)||UFC 13: The Ultimate Force||5/30/1997||1||0:56||UFC 13 Heavyweight Semi-finals bout|
Couture wrestled at Alderwood Middle School in Lynnwood, Washington then moved onto Lynnwood High School where he won a State Championship during his senior year. Couture served in the U.S. Army from 1982–1988. Upon discharge, he was a three-time Olympic team alternate (1988, 1992 and 1996); a semifinalist at the 2000 Olympic Trials; a three-time National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division-I All-American and a two-time NCAA Division-I runner-up at Oklahoma State University. In 1992 he was the Division-1 runner up at 190 pounds coming in second after Mark Kerr.
Mixed Martial Arts Career
Couture first appeared in the UFC on May 30, 1997 as part of UFC 13: The Ultimate Force. The event consisted of two four-man tournaments: one in the light heavyweight (under 200 lb) division and one in the heavyweight (200 lb and over) division. Couture fought in the heavyweight tournament, and won it, defeating Tony Halme and Steven Graham in the process. His next match was an elimination bout for the heavyweight title against the young Brazilian "Phenom", Vitor Belfort, who at the time was on a four fight winning streak. Couture scored a TKO victory in what UFC announcer Bruce Beck described as "a stunning upset."
Couture won his first heavyweight title via decision in a 1997 match against kickboxer Maurice Smith. Couture didn't keep the belt for long. Soon after, he was stripped of the title when he could not come to contractual terms with the UFC and its parent company at the time, Semaphore Entertainment Group. After leaving the UFC, Couture fought in Vale Tudo Japan 1998 where he was submitted via armbar by Enson Inoue. He later competed in the RINGS King of Kings 2000 tournament.
In 2000, Couture returned to the UFC to recapture the heavyweight title from Kevin Randleman at UFC 28 on November 17 of that year. Throughout 2001, Couture defended his heavyweight title twice, both times against the Brazilian heavyweight contender Pedro Rizzo. After defeating Rizzo he went on to lose the UFC heavyweight title in a fight with Josh Barnett via TKO in the 2nd round at UFC 36 in 2002. After the fight, Barnett tested positive for anabolic steroids and was subsequently stripped of his title. With the heavyweight title vacant, Couture fought Ricco Rodriguez, at UFC 39, for the title. Couture initially controlled the fight and was arguably on his way to a decision win, but eventually suffered a TKO loss in the 5th round.
Light Heavyweight Title and Trilogy with Liddell
After his two consecutive losses in the heavyweight division to larger opponents, Couture moved down a weight class to fight at 205 lbs in the UFC's light heavyweight division. In his light heavyweight debut, Couture took on long-time number one contender Chuck Liddell for the interim light heavyweight championship. Couture won by TKO in the third round, and became the only UFC competitor to win championship titles in two weight classes, a feat since matched in 2008 by B.J. Penn; this earned Couture his nickname "Captain America". His next match was billed as a "Champion vs. Champion" fight in order to settle who was the rightful, undisputed champion of the division. Couture faced the five-time defending champion Tito Ortiz for the undisputed light heavyweight title. Couture won a unanimous decision and became the undisputed UFC light heavyweight champion at age 40.
On April 16, 2005, Couture lost his title and suffered the first knockout loss of his career in a rematch with Chuck Liddell. Couture came back in August with a win over Mike Van Arsdale to re-establish himself as a top contender. He faced Liddell again for the third and final time in a championship match on February 4, 2006 at UFC 57. He did not succeed, falling victim to a second round knockout. Immediately after the match, he announced his retirement from the sport.
On June 24, 2006, during The Ultimate Fighter 3 Finale, which was broadcast live on Spike TV, Couture became the fourth fighter to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, joining Royce Gracie, Dan Severn, and Ken Shamrock.
After retiring from the professional fighting circuit, Couture began embarking on a variety of activities, including appearing at UFC events as a regular broadcast commentator and as co-host of "Before/After The Bell" on The Fight Network. He also appeared in the Rob Schneider comedy Big Stan, along with fellow mixed martial artists Don Frye and Bob Sapp.
Couture was featured on season two of Spike TV's reality show "Pros vs. Joes", which premiered on January 25, 2007. His teammates on the episode were Michael Irvin, Kevin Willis, and José Canseco. He returned for the finale, where he even took part in a football based round. His teammates were Willis, Randall Cunningham, Bruce Smith, Roy Jones Jr., and Tim Hardaway. Couture also had a brief cameo appearance on the season finale of the CBS show The Unit as a military guard and on the film Redbelt as a fight commentator. Couture also appeared on an episode of The History Channel's "Human Weapon" on September 27, 2007, and starred in the 2008 film, The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior.
Reclaiming the Heavyweight Title
On January 11, 2007, Couture appeared for an interview on the Spike TV magazine show, Inside the UFC to announce his return from retirement. In a conversation with Joe Rogan, Couture confirmed that he would be facing Tim Sylvia for the UFC heavyweight championship at UFC 68 on March 3, 2007 and revealed that he had signed a four-fight, two-year deal with the company.
At the age of 43, Couture defeated then-champion Tim Sylvia at UFC 68 by unanimous decision to claim his third UFC heavyweight title. Couture's first punch, at 0:08 of the first round, sent the 6'8" (2.03m) Sylvia reeling to the mat. Couture controlled the pace of the fight for five rounds, smothering Sylvia with effective striking and numerous takedowns. All three judges' scored the bout 50-45 for Couture, making him the first fighter in UFC history to become a three-time champion.
On August 25, 2007, at UFC 74 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, Couture defended his title against Gabriel Gonzaga, who previously defeated Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovicc at UFC 70 to become the number one contender. In the fight, Couture defeated Gonzaga by TKO (strikes) to retain the title. Couture suffered a broken left arm from blocking one of Gonzaga's kicks during the course of the fight. The kick cleanly separated the ulna bone. The injury placed the UFC heavyweight champion’s arm in a splint for six weeks. This would be the least of Couture's worries as shortly after the fight he would be embroiled in a legal battle with the UFC.
Resignation and dispute with the UFC
On October 11, 2007, Couture announced that he was severing all ties with the UFC, leaving two contracted fights, a position as an on-air analyst, and his heavyweight championship behind. Reportedly he received $250,000 plus $936,000 of PPV revenue for his comeback against Tim Sylvia. He also reportedly received a $250,000 purse for defeating Gabriel Gonzaga, as well as a $35,000 bonus for "Fight of the Night" and $787,000 in PPV revenue. This became a sticking point since Chuck Liddell lost his two previous fights yet is still being paid a higher amount, according to Couture. Couture cited the UFC's failure to sign #1 ranked heavyweight fighter Fedor Emelianenko, as well as disputes with UFC management.
UFC president Dana White said Thursday Oct. 18, 2007 that Couture remains the promotion's heavyweight champion despite his announced plans to quit. White also reiterated he would not release Couture from the final two fights on his UFC contract. Couture held a press conference on October 25, 2007 in which he denied his leaving of the UFC was a "retirement," set forth his grievances over the pay he received for his fights against Tim Sylvia and Gabriel Gonzaga, and reiterated his belief that he would be free from any contractual obligations to the UFC after nine months. On October 30, 2007, White and UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta held another press conference. There White reiterated the UFC's position that Couture remains the promotion's heavyweight champion despite his tendered resignation, and that Couture would remain obligated under his UFC contract well beyond nine months. White also released documents at the press conference to refute Couture's claims about the pay he received. Sherdog.com analyzed language reportedly found in the UFC's standard contracts relating to fighter retirement which Sherdog believes clarifies the dispute over Couture's contractual status.
In another chapter to the Couture/UFC saga, White and Randy Couture met and had a "good" conversation at UFC 78. However, White also met with Couture during the Thanksgiving holiday to discuss a possible return to the Octagon, where Couture said he had no desire to return to the UFC at that time.
Cornering some of his fighters from Xtreme Couture at HDNet Fights on December 15, 2007 in Dallas, Texas, Couture answered questions about Fedor stating that he would like to fight him in October once his employment contract with the UFC has expired, if the UFC cannot come to some kind of co-promotion agreement with M-1 Global before that time.
On January 15, 2008 Zuffa filed a lawsuit in Clark County District Court in Nevada citing breach of contract and irreparable damage. Zuffa is seeking over $10,000 in damages. This suit concerns only Couture's employment contract and not his promotional contract. On February 28, 2008 Judge Jennifer Togliatti handed down the first ruling in the case of Zuffa v. Randy Couture issuing a preliminary injunction barring Couture's participation in an IFL event to be held the following day.
On August 2, 2008 a Texas appeals court granted Zuffa LLC's (the UFC's parent company) request for a stay against a motion for a declaratory judgment in a suit filed by HDNet regarding Randy Couture's contractual status with the UFC. The stay effectively ends the dispute in the state of Texas and Zuffa will be allowed to move forward with the Nevada suit.
Return to the UFC
On September 2, 2008 the UFC announced a 3 fight deal with the now 45 year old Randy Couture to return to active competition for the UFC. His first fight back was at UFC 91 on November 15, 2008 in Las Vegas, Nevada where he lost his UFC Heavyweight Championship to Brock Lesnar. It was at first a closely contested match, however, later in the fight Lesnar knocked Couture down and finished him with hammer fists for a TKO victory at 3:07 of the second round. In the post fight interview with Joe Rogan, Couture declared his desire to keep fighting. He stated that he felt like he was still becoming a better fighter and blamed his loss on a bad performance, not his age.
Couture has said he still wants to fight former PRIDE World Heavyweight Champion and the current WAMMA Heavyweight Champion Fedor Emelianenko, but the UFC has been unable to reach an agreement with Fedor. Emelianenko's current contract with Affliction Entertainment is exclusive only in the U.S.
On February 26, 2009 it was reported that Couture had agreed to a bout with former UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion and former PRIDE World Heavyweight Champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 102: Couture vs. Nogueira in Portland, Oregon. Couture lost a very competitive bout via unanimous decision against Nogueria. After the fight, Couture stated he felt like he was in the best shape of his life, and that he will wait and see what the UFC has in store for him in the future. The fight received the 'Fight of the Night' award, with both men receiving the bonus. It was then announced at the post-fight press conference that he had just signed a new six-fight deal, in order to end his career where it began, in the UFC. He also stated that a move to Light Heavyweight was not out of the question, but was quite likely.
A move to Light Heavyweight was exactly where Couture decided to go, returning to the division to face Brandon Vera, another Heavyweight turned Light Heavyweight, to headline UFC 105: Couture vs. Vera. The fight would be Couture's second non-title fight in a row, which is something that has not happened since 2001. Couture defeated Vera in his first fight at Light Heavyweight since his loss to Chuck Liddell in 2006. Randy controlled the tempo of the fight by dominating the clinch and won a unanimous decision. At age 46, Couture became the oldest fighter to ever win a fight in the UFC.
Only a few days after Couture defeated Vera, it was announced that a bout between Couture and Mark Coleman was in the works for UFC 109: Relentless, and was later signed by both parties. The bout will pit the two oldest UFC currently contracted fighters against one another. The bout between the two was originally scheduled for UFC 17: Redemption in 1998, but a Couture injury forced the cancellation of the bout. Nearly twelve years later, the bout headlined the UFC 109 card. Another interesting aspect of the bout, was that Coleman is training with former Xtreme Couture striking trainer Shawn Thompkins for the bout.
Just a minute into that second frame, Couture earned the takedown – despite Coleman's initial attempts at grabbing the fence to stay upright – and then softened him with a brutal ground-and-pound assault from the mount. Once Coleman gave up his back, Couture slapped on a deep rear-naked choke, though his opponent refused to tap out. Instead, Coleman went unconscious and prompted the referee's intervention at the 1:09 mark of the round.
Only days after his defeat of Coleman, it was rumored that Couture would return to action to face former UFC Middleweight Champion Rich Franklin. The fight never materialized as Franklin instead fought Chuck Liddell, and in the end he was scheduled to face Heavyweight Boxing Champion James Toney in his UFC and MMA debut. The bout took place at Heavyweight on August 27, 2010 at UFC 118: Edgar vs. Penn 2. Couture didn't eat a single punch before he scored a takedown, quickly hopped into the mount position, and then unloaded dozens of punches en route to securing an eventual fight-ending Arm Triangle Choke a little more than three minutes into the first round.
- Big Stan as Carnahan.
- Redbelt as Dylan Flynn.
- Invincible as 'Toruci' Player #1
- The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior as Sargon. (Couture's voice was deemed unacceptable by the producers due to lack of "vocal gravitas" and was digitally modified for the entire movie)
- Cradle 2 the Grave as Fighter #8.
- Today You Die as Vincent's Bodyguard.
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 video game as Commander Warren Fuller.
- The King of Queens episode "Fight Schlub" as Priority Plus Driver
- Two episodes of The Unit as Sgt. Strickland
Couture was previously married to Sharon and Tricia, and he is now married to Kim Couture (née Holderman). He has three children, sons Ryan and Caden and daughter Aimee, in addition to a stepson. Politically, he identifies himself with the Republican Party, but he chose not to officially endorse a candidate in the 2008 Presidential Election. Kim & Randy have filed for divorce, with Randy continuing to coach and support Kim's MMA career.
- Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - second place (June 13, 1990)
- Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - winner (January 1, 1991)
- Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - second place (January 1, 1992)
- Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 97 kg - third place (May 21, 1997)
- Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 97 kg - second place (March 24, 1998)
- Pan American Games Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - winner (August 6, 1991)
- FILA test tournament Greco-Roman Seniors 97 kg - third place (March 14, 1998)
- FILA World Cup Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - third place (November 9, 1991)
- FILA World Cup Greco-Roman Seniors 90 kg - third place (November 21, 1992)
- UFC 13 heavyweight tournament winner
- Two-time UFC light heavyweight champion
- Interim UFC light heavyweight champion
- Three-time UFC heavyweight champion
- Ultimate Fighting Championship Hall of Fame
- First six-time champion in UFC history
- First fighter in UFC history to hold titles at both light heavyweight and heavyweight
- First fighter in UFC history to become a champion after being inducted into the Hall of Fame