Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta respond to Randy Couture and the media conference he held on Thursday of las week. The UFC and its representatives discussed various topics including Couture’s payroll, his wife’s statement about his Couture not being promoted and his future in the UFC.
Fertitta was not happy at all with Couture’s speech as he felt that he was putting the UFC down. He didn’t understand why Couture was doing all of this when 8 months ago, he was a witness to the contract signing. There was absolutely no disagreement when he signed the 4-fight deal, but he decides to complain now. Fertitta didn’t ever expect something like this to happen, especially coming from a world class MMA fighter like Couture. Dana White and John Mulkey went on to talk about the details on Couture’s
pay-per-fight finances. He pointed out that Randy’s pay-per-view numbers were pretty much off. When the heavyweight champion pointed out that he was acquiring $500,000 USD per fight, it was more like $936,000 USD for UFC 68 when he faced Tim Sylvia and $787,000 USD for UFC 74 when he faced Gabriel Gonzaga. Mulkey added that when Couture told the media he acquired approximately $750,000 per fight, it was more like $1.186 million USD for UFC 68 and $1.127 million USD for UFC 74. They even handed out their copy of the payouts to the media to show as evidence for what they were stating.
They also answered back to the Xtreme Couture blog statement that Couture’s wife had written, where she stated that the UFC hardly promoted his husband throughout his career. Dana White and other UFC representatives pointed out the fact that he was featured on several programs including the first, second and fourth seasons of "The Ultimate Fighter." He was brought in as a coach, a guest instructor and a paid consultant who designed some of the challenges. Not only that, but Randy Couture was also paid for working in the UFC such as being an announcer (which paid him $50,000 USD anually) and a legislative ambassador (which paid him $200,000 annually).
In the end, Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta simply wanted to answer back to Couture’s media conference and prove that they never wanted to bash Couture in any way. However, they needed to defend their organization and prove that his statements were not exactly how he pointed them out. They still consider Randy Couture the UFC heavyweight champion and he currently belongs to the UFC as he still under contract. They want him to come fight again and if he agrees, a fight between the champ and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira will most likely be scheduled for February of 2008.
If Randy does decide to come back, this fight would be a good way to start the year for MMA heavyweights in 2008. We’ll be waiting for Randy’s response and have everyone posted with whatever choice he makes.