Sunday, August 15, 2010

Randy Couture Pulls No Punches in Boxing vs. MMA Debate

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Randy Couture has remained relatively quiet in the months approaching his well awaited showdown with world class boxer James Toney. The fight, which will take place at UFC 118, has motivated an ongoing debate in the combat community—who's better, the boxer or the mixed martial artist?

Couture has managed to steer clear a trash-talking tennis match with JT, but that hasn't kept him from sharing his opinion. He recognizes that boxing is a critical part of any mixed martial artist's skill set, but he believes that too many boxers overlook the other aspects of MMA (kicking, grappling, clinching, etc). Couture however, does acknowledge Toney's punching power. He also mentions Floyd Mayweather in particular, as one among many boxers who have criticized mixed martial arts without considering or understanding all of the skills required of the sport.

Peep the quotable:

"We've heard (Floyd Mayweather Jr.) and others run their mouths about it, and he's the first one that's actually had the courage to step up and fight, and stand behind what he's talking.

"He's a tremendous boxer. I've watched him compete. He's a four-time world champion. He's an amazing striker. The question is how much of the other stuff is he going to be able to pick up and learn by the time he has to step into that cage.

"I don't think boxers get it. I don't think people from the boxing world understand all the dimensions of our sport, and how the clinch work and the wrestling, and all the other stuff changes your ability to strike," said Couture. "It's not a pure form of striking like boxing, so you have to adapt and find those situations where you can still be an effective striker, but there's a lot of other things to think about. There's a lot of questions to be answered in a fight like this."

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