Championship Appearances: 15
In the fourth fight of his career, Randy Couture won the UFC heavyweight title by defeating Maurice Smith via decision. However, Couture briefly left the UFC after that win and was stripped of his belt as a result.
When he returned to the Octagon, Couture was granted an immediate title shot against Kevin Randleman, who "The Natural" finished in the third round to reclaim his belt. Couture defended his title on two occasions against Pedro Rizzo before losing against Josh Barnett.
Because Barnett was instantaneously released from the UFC after failing a drug test for his fight with Couture, "The Natural" was given a chance to reclaim his belt against Ricco Rodriguez. Couture lost to Rodriguez, though, and moved to the light heavyweight division.
With Tito Ortiz unwilling to fight Chuck Liddell at the time, Couture was inserted into an interim title fight with Liddell and he made the most of it by stopping "The Iceman" in the third round. Couture defended his belt against Ortiz before losing it temporarily due to an unfortunate cut in the opening minute of a bout with Vitor Belfort.
In an immediate rematch, Couture regained his belt from Belfort, but he would then lose it again in another rematch against Liddell. After picking up one win, Couture was given a rubber match with Liddell, but he was defeated once again.
Though he retired from the sport for one year following his second loss to Liddell, Couture was given a heavyweight title shot upon his return to the Octagon. Despite being a significant underdog, Couture defeated Tim Sylvia and picked up one last title defense against Gabriel Gonzaga before running into Brock Lesnar.
For now, Couture's record is safe, but St-Pierre and Silva are quickly approaching and are certainly capable of surpassing the legend should they continue competing in the years to come.