“I’m tired of swimming up stream…something needs to change.”

Meanwhile, here are some of the highlights from Couture’s presser that was shown live HDNet and proelite.com were:

  • “I’ve had issues with Zuffa and the company since they bought it in 2001…It’s the little things that make athletes feel appreciated that weren’t done…weren’t being done from my perspective that were done for a lot of other athletes.
  • “Everyone’s trying to make a big deal out of the money. This was never a money issue. It’s been a prevailing feeling of respect that wasn’t being given for eleven years of my life I have tried to represent this sports with integrity…Represent this sport in a particular way for the owner before and the owners now and I’ve never felt that that was appreciated.”
  • “I think that the Fertitas and Dana White did a marvelous job in saving our sport. I think our sport was gonna die. Does that mean I agree with all the decisions they’ve made and how they’ve treated a lot of people…no, I don’t agree with a lot of that.”
  • “I’ve been taken care of, I’m the last guy to complain. People are gonna ask questions ‘oh you’ve signed a contract eight months ago you seemed perfectly happy with that contract then.’ Nah, I wasn’t happy with that contract then.”
  • “I asked for a signing bonus and wasn’t given one. I don’t really know why but I wanted to fight.”
  • The general theme, as expected, was that Couture was pissed they were offering huge contracts to the Pride fighters and he wasn’t making close to their contracts.
  • He said he heard Liddell made close to $17 million last year while his base salary for the Sylvia and Gonzaga fights was $250,000 per fight. He also made one dollar for 100,000 ppv buy and up to three dollars for 330,00 PPV buys. Not exactly the $3.25-3.75 million that had been reported.
  • He kept saying that it wasn’t about the money yet he kept talking about money.
  • Once the Fedor match was off the table, he felt as though he had nothing left to gain by staying in the UFC.
  • Couture claims that his “hollywood agent” (as White has called him) had nothing to do with this because his agent has been with him for a while and he is his sports agent.
  • “I’m tired of swimming up stream…something needs to change.”
  • “They were given every opportunity…I expressed face-to-face how I felt…I’m not going to get into a pissing match with Dana.”
  • Couture says that prior to returning to the UFC he was offered $3 million dollars to fight Fedor in Bodog and took that offer to the UFC. That is when White proposed the Sylvia match.
  • “I’m saying that I simply left the UFC at this stage. It would be silly for me to sit here and say I’m retiring again… nobody is going to buy that crap, anyway.”
  • Couture said that he received a bonus after the Liddell fights and the Sylvia fight yet he didn’t receive any kind of bonus after the Gonzaga fight. He was extremely bothered by that.
  • Couture acknowledged that he has nine more months left on his contract so he seems to be willing to wait it out and then look elsewhere.

Courtesy of RawVegas.tv here are two videos of Randy Couture’s press conference.

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