It’s been several days since the Randy Couture Wheel of Retirement stopped spinning and it looks like it’s gonna stay on ‘Retire.’ So I guess we can say with some certainty that his fight next weekend is definitely maybe going to be his last MMA fight ever. Possibly. He’s done a slew of media interviews recently and in every one he’s stayed firm: that’s all, folks!
“I think that was one of the things that I struggled with, is that I am healthy as ever. I feel great, I absolutely have the ability to continue to compete at this level. [But] I feel like I’ve stretched it and pushed it and don’t want to wait until I have those [injury/health] issues to think about and to weigh in to training camp or weigh in to a fight,” he explains.
“I think that’s part of going out on my terms, is to [just] go. I have a whole bunch of other things that I enjoy doing in my life and I don’t want to wait until I have that injury to have doctors telling me, ‘look, you can’t fight anymore.’
“I know that’s going to affect all the other things I like to do. I like to hunt, I like to ride my bike, I like to do a lot of other things and I’m healthy and can enjoy the rest of my life right now. I don’t want to wait too long [before retiring.]”
There’s also the realization that he’s always one Hulk Smash away from being considered washed up, which is no way to end a career. Thanks for the life lesson, Professor Iceman!
“I felt horrible for Chuck. Everybody was chatting about him retiring. He’s been such an amazing champion and he had such an aura around him. To have him drop the last couple in the way he did, it just sucked. The way the fans talked about him, it was very disappointing. I felt bad for him. There had to be an end. I’m not crazy. I’m not nuts. I realize it’s not going to last forever. So why not take control and do it on my terms? When I want to do it and not because I’ve been knocked out the last three times and nobody wants to see me get beat up again? I never want to have that conversation with anybody.”
It probably wasn’t that much fun the first time around, after he got knocked out twice by (oh the irony) Chuck Liddell in under a year. That kicked off Randy’s first retirement, which lasted … 13 months. I’m figuring this time he might actually manage to stay away for nearly two years!