Randy Couture is done playing with our heart strings and done negotiating, which means no more empty threats of retirement on twitter. After making a statement saying he would fight again only if he got a big fight, which I thought would be an unrealistic demand, has actually come true.
“The Natural” will be meeting Lyoto Machida at UFC 129 on April 30 in Toronto, the promotion’s first trip to Canada’s largest city. Machida is coming off a very close loss after a three-round battle against Quinton Jackson that could have and probably should have been a draw (even though I scored it for Machida but you can argue with me on the article here). Couture’s last fight was against James Toney at UFC 118, which he won by dominating and not being an over-the-hill, one dimensional boxer. Machida is still very high up in the standings towards the UFC light-heavyweight title and this is actually a decent litmus test to see where Randy ranks as well. Machida’s slower and methodical pace is perfect for Couture’s fighting style and this fight offers some interesting ideas in how the fight could end up, and should tell us for a fact how many more times we will see Couture back in the cage.
GSP is also expected to defend his welterweight title against someone, most likely Jake Shields, because St. Pierre is a national hero and this fight is a huge deal. Cain Velasquez was also expected to defend his heavyweight title for the first time against Junior Dos Santos, except someone forgot to tell Cain about the curse of the UFC heavyweight title, and Velasquez has suffered a shoulder injury that will prevent him from setting foot in the octagon for at least 6-8 months. Any early predictions for Couture VS Machida?