During a new interview UFC hall-of-famer Randy Couture, who cornered UFC lightweight No.1 contender Gray Maynard during his title fight with Frankie Edgar on New Years Day, gives an insight into the behind-the-scenes wrangling that took place after the UFC 125 fight.
In the immediate aftermath of the fight it was quickly announced that despite the fight ending in a draw, that Maynard would not get an immediate rematch, and instead Anthony Pettis would now take on Edgar as had originally been planned.
At the time many assumed that this had been UFC President Dana White’s call, putting business first to make a fight that would be a bigger draw given the recent hype surrounding Pettis, and the perceived lack of interest in Maynard, though hours later he appeared to change his mind and did book the Edgar Vs Maynard rematch after all.
According to Couture however, that’s not the way things went down after the show, and that it was in fact UFC matchmaker Joe Silva who had made the initial decision.
“Joe Silva was the one who thought that the former WEC champion [Anthony Pettis] should get the winner that was promised to him, but in my estimation there was no winner, it was a draw,” Couture tells MM30’s Dave Farra.
“So, Gray should get the immediate rematch, and I think Dana saw it that way too. Joe was the one who kind of dissented and wanted to see that other fight happen first. Obviously we’re happy that Dana saw it that way, and ultimately it’s his call.”
As for the actual fight itself, Couture says he felt Maynard should have won, but that he could see how it was scored a draw. The former multiple-time champion believes Maynard will seize the belt from Edgar next time though.
Elsewhere in the interview Couture reveals that in addition to The Expandables 2 and a small part in a movie with Bruce Willis and 50 Cent, he’s also going to play the lead in an untitled movie with a, “Die Hard-esque script,” which will shoot for four weeks in February.
Just a few weeks ago Couture was telling everyone that he no longer had the desire to fight for the 205lb title, but the competitive drive still burns inside the 47 year-old so never say never.
“You know what, I’m interested in fighting Shogun. If he retains the title that’s icing on the cake.”
Couture also gave some insights on a number of the fighters who train at Xtreme Couture who have big fights coming up soon.
According to Couture they are planning to have Vitor Belfort pressure Anderson Silva from the opening bell after watching how successful Chael Sonnen was with that strategy.
Interestingly he reveals that Forrest Griffin is keeping his weight under control prior to his fight with Rich Franklin, walking around at no more than 220lbs, whereas in the past he can often balloon up to closer to 240lb before cutting to the light-heavyweight limit.
Couture hopes that Martin Kampmann will, “let his hands and feet go,” to ensure victory against Diego Sanchez in March, after being overly cautious cost him the fight against Jake Shields last time out.
Check out the full interview with ‘The Natural’ below.