For the past few weeks I've said countless times that Randy Couture most likely has no interest in winning any more championship titles before his contract expires and he inevitably retires from the UFC as one of the greatest fighters to ever enter the Octagon.
Like Matt Hughes seems to be doing, I believed that Couture would ride out the rest of his contract taking mostly fights that merely interest him and don't necessarily mean much, such as his upcoming bout with James Toney.
In recent comments, Couture has pretty much ground-and-pounded my credibility, explicitly showing interest in not only one day winning the light heavyweight title for a third time, but doing it as soon as within the next six months against the winner of UFC 113's Machida vs. Rua.
Speaking to MMAweekly.com, Couture's intentions were made clear.
“I think within the next six months I’d like to be in line to fight the winner of the Machida vs. Shogun fight. I’m going to be in Montreal to watch that fight very attentively. I think it’s going to be a great fight," said The Natural.
While this is nothing more than Couture showing interest and not a statement made by Dana White, one has to wonder how much pull Couture actually has.
There has been speculation and rumors that the winner of Evans vs. Jackson would be next in line for the title shot. While this would make more sense than Couture getting the shot, crazier things have happened in the UFC and nothing should be surprising.
Regardless of whether or not he gets the next shot at the title, Couture's statements raise an even bigger question of how long he will continue to compete in the UFC. Should his contract expire before he gets a shot at the title, there is now a bigger possibility of him signing a new contract and continuing to fight possibly past the age of 50.
However, my gut* tells me that the UFC will probably give Couture a shot at the title before his current contract expires.
*As stated at the beginning of this article, Couture has proved me wrong before, so my gut feeling should be taken as lightly as possible.