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Randy Couture vs. Fedor Emelianenko - Can Couture Withstand Fedor?

By Robert Rousseau,

Fedor-Couture in the UFC Octagon

Let's face it: If Dana White and the UFC had succeeded in securing Fedor Emelianenko to a UFC contract then Randy Couture would have never walked away from his championship belt. It's just that simple. Further, Couture has gone on record reinforcing just that notion.

Said another way, Couture is displeased about a lot of things, but he's a competitor. If the challenge of Fedor had been there then he would've stayed to take it on.

On the flip side, Fedor Emelianenko, a man widely believed to be the best heavyweight mixed martial artist on the planet today, wants a match up with Randy Couture as well. He has also gone on the record indicating that Dana White is standing in the way of this.

It's hard to blame White for not giving in as right now the UFC has a stranglehold on the industry; thus, it might not be a great business decision. Then again, a co-promotion with this fight as the main event could quite possibly be the biggest fight in MMA history.

In other words, we're talking big money. So, without further ado here's a little something to whet your whistle in case this match up ever does take place.

Fedor Emelianenko is the most well-rounded heavyweight fighter in mixed martial arts today. His takedowns are well above average. In fact, he's one of the best Sambo fighters on the planet. What's more, he possesses devastating strength and is an absolute killer when he has the top position on the ground.

Watch one of his victories over current UFC Heavyweight Champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira for proof. Even from someone else's guard, he hits hard enough to end a fight.

The crazy thing about Emelianenko is that he's also a better than average technical striker with very fast hands that seem to hold TNT in them. Beyond that, when put on his back Fedor is still one of the more dangerous heavyweights on the planet.

He's not on the level of an Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira when it comes to submissions, but he's just below that.

Finally, Fedor is a true champion that knows how to make a game plan, stick to it, and persevere through difficult situations. In that way, he's much like the next man we're going to talk about.

Randy Couture is a man known for bending others to his will. He does this by dominating them in the clinch, taking them down, and pounding the fight right out of them. Along with this, he's one of the best heavyweight MMA combatants in the clinch ever (unlike Anderson Silva, he utilizes the clinch to take fighters down and / or dirty box with them). When it comes to takedowns and ground control, Couture is the best the heavyweight division has ever seen, period.

And, as was indicated earlier, Randy Couture is a master strategist. He knows how to make a game plan and stick to it. Further, he's one of the most mentally strong fighters in history.

In terms of weaknesses, Couture is not very good from his back. Further, against bigger fighters he has demonstrated a tendency to fatigue in the later rounds and get turned over (see Ricco Rodriguez and Josh Barnett).

Randy Couture vs. Fedor Emelianenko - Break Down

Here it is in a nutshell. As strong as Fedor is, Randy Couture has the stuff to take him down. The question is, does he really want to?

Thus, that may play into who wins here. Once Couture gets Fedor to the ground - if he can do that before getting knocked out (likely)- then it becomes his ground and pound versus Fedor's submissions. Who wins?

Hard to say.

On their feet, it's very doubtful that Couture can knock Fedor out, but he'll be better in the clinch than him. That said, Fedor would likely have the striking advantage from a distance and in regard to power. Thus, the Russian fighter would seem to possess more ways to stop his opponent (submission, KO) then his opponent has of likely stopping him (ground and pounding his way to a decision or TKO).

But this is Randy Couture we're talking about, a man that always seems to come through with flying colors. Is it possible for him to steer clear of submissions and Fedor's knockout power? Can he utilize his ground and pound toward a clear victory?

Possible? Yes. Likely? That's for you to decide. But here's some more food for thought. If this fight happens in an Octagon, it helps Couture's cause. If it happens in a ring - think M-1 here - then that might bode better for Fedor.

Hopefully, we all get to see this fight happen one day.

About the Writer

Robert Rousseau is a long time writer for For more information and the latest in MMA, visit his website at

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