On May 15th 1998 Randy Couture and Mark Coleman were set to face off at the UFC 17: Redemption event in Mobile, Alabama. However Couture injured his ribs during training for the Greco-Roman Wrestling Nationals and was forced out of the bout. Now, eleven years later both men are UFC Hall of Famers, former UFC Champions and icons of the sport. Now, the time comes for them to finally meet face-to-face.
Sherdog has reported that both Mark Coleman & Randy Couture have verbally agreed to a Light-Heavyweight bout at UFC 109, set to take place in Las Vegas. Both men are still trying to re-claim their own past glory and prove that they can still hang in there with the young-guns of the 205-Division. Furthermore, an impressive victory from either man could blast them forward in the direction of current UFC Light-Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida.
In his last outing of this past Saturday, Randy Couture edged Light-Heavyweight prospect Brandon Vera in a controversial Unanimous Decision. On the other hand Mark Coleman has been inactive due to injury since his Unanimous Decision victory over The Ultimate Fighter Season 1 alumni, Stephan Bonnar.
The question becomes 'How far does a victory for either man push them to The Dragon?' For Couture he would likely be pushed right into the mix of top challengers seeing as he has a history of getting a title-shot basically whenever he pleases. But for Coleman it won't be that simple. Coleman is 1-1 inside the UFC upon his return in January of this year and needs a few more solid victories over name opponents before he would be considered for a title opportunity.
Leading into this bout Couture has to be seen as the heavy favourite –he has been far more active than Coleman recently and would be considered the superior Mixed Martial Artist in my humble opinion. However Coleman is two years younger than "The Natural" and may have a little more gas in his tank.
Whichever way you look at it, this will be the first time two Hall of Famers have ever faced off and could be just the fight to push either man back to their former glory. February 6th 2010 is the date; mark it in your calendar and be sure to watch as two legends of our great sport collide.