Randy Couture has finally spoke up about why he left the UFC, it was all about R-E-S-P-E-C-T.
Couture started by saying, “I think it’s the little things that make athletes feel appreciated, that weren’t done from my perspective that were done for a lot of other athletes.
“Everyone’s trying to make a big deal about the money. This was never been a money issue. It’s been a prevailing issue of respect that wasn’t given for 11 years of my life I’ve spent trying to represent this sport with integrity, represent this sport in a particular way, for the owners before and the owners now. I’ve never felt like that was appreciated, like I was put out there and used appropriately.”
The former champion did admit he was partly to blame for the situation he put himself into saying, “I wasn’t happy with the contract, but it wasn’t really about that. It wasn’t about the zeroes, I still wanted to fight.
“In a negotiation, if you’re not willing to walk away, then you take whatever their willing to give you. I was told no, we can’t give you a signing bonus. I know Tim [Sylvia] and Matt [Hughes] and several of the other fighters had been given signing bonuses, I didn’t really understand why I wasn’t worthy of one.
“They pull another guy in from another organization because they want him, and they pay him coming in more than you’ve ever been paid. Are you going to feel a little insulted and hurt about that? After you’ve been there for 11 years busting your ass? That was kind of the final straw for me, seeing what these guys from PRIDE were getting paid or offered.” Couture said.