During the short history of MMA in America, few fighters have exhibited the "IT" factor. The brashness of Tito Ortiz, the knockout power of Chuck Liddell, the trash talking of Phil Baroni, or the chiseled physique of GSP. Yet, one fighter in particular had IT without displaying many of the above attributes. His style was not overly exciting, nor was he ever thought to be invincible. However, the one thing he did more than anyone else was win when he wasn't supposed to. Just as the Japanese love to see David and Goliath matches, American's love to root for the underdog, thus aptly naming Randy Couture "Captain America".
Couture has always been articulate, soft spoken, honorable, and respectful. All qualities that endeared him to some of MMA's most hardcore fans. However, in October 2007 a big chink was put in that armor when he abruptly resigned from the UFC. It wasn't the fact the he resigned, it was how and why he chose to do so. Couture resigned from the very contract in which he signed less than a year earlier via fax machine. Couture held a press conference later in which he cited money issues, lack of respect, and the inability of the UFC to sign Fedor Emelianenko to justify his decision. However, the UFC countered with a conference of their own. Thus proving that some of the information Couture provided was not factual, in terms of the amount he was awarded per fight. The other conditions were simply beyond their control(they tried to sign Fedor).
Not only was Couture not truthful, he failed to keep his obligations in fulfilling a contract that he signed. Just last week he lost a court decision which basically put the ball in Zuffa's court as to what they want to do with him. They could renegotiate a new contract, or have him fulfill the contract he resigned from. It has been almost a year since Couture took his stance against the UFC, and quite frankly he doesn't have anything to show for it.
He still has not been able to fight Fedor, and he's went a whole year without fighting. Thus, costing him monies lost from court costs as well as not fighting. Not to mention the luster of the Fedor/Couture fight not being the same now, as it would have been had he fought Nogueira and won(he would not have won IMO).
All the years he spent doing the right thing was torn down by one act of selfishness...tarnishing a legacy that had the potential to be even more legendary.