Dana White Warns Ryan Couture: ‘Your Dad Can’t Corner You, Can’t Even Buy Tickets’

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White não quer mais ver Randy Couture no UFC. Foto: UFC/Divulgação

Dana White doesn’t want to ever see his former employee Randy Couture at his event again. (UFC publicity photo)

Randy Couture’s departure from the UFC wasn’t the smoothest for the Hall of Famer.

Besides the haranguing he got from Dana White after announcing that he will be coaching rival promotion Bellator’s new reality show, the former heavyweight champion is forbidden from cornering his son, Ryan Couture, who was just picked up by the Ultimate Fighting Championship after Strikeforce closed its doors.

Dana White said his problem with Randy will not affect his son’s contract with the UFC, although there will be some restrictions.

“I told Ryan that he has a contract with the UFC but that his father can’t be in his corner. He can’t even buy a ticket to the event,” White said. “I know Randy’s his dad, so if he wants to cancel the contract and sign with Bellator, maybe he’ll do better with his father over there. But I understand that all kids dream of fighting in the UFC. If he say’s he doesn’t, he’s either lying or nuts.”

Responding at a Bellator press conference yesterday at Viacom headquarters, the former UFC star turned Hollywood actor said his son is his own man and that whether he will or will not be in his son’s corner is the athletic commission’s decision to make.

“Ryan’s a man already. He created his own style. All he has of mine is my last name. As for being in his corner, that’s the athletic commission’s problem, and we’ll cross that bridge when the time comes,” said a defiant Randy Couture.

Bellator’s reality show, “Fight Master,” will premier this summer. Couture will coach on the show against teams headed by Frank Shamrock, Greg Jackson and Joe Warren.

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There are 39 comments for this article
  1. Scott Feist at 8:47 pm

    What a baby Dana White is. I guess Randy is supposed to just lay down even though he's retired. So what about Greg Jackson? Is he allowed to corner UFC fights. Randy is a gym owning coach now just like Greg Jackson. Whats the difference? Dana is such a bitch control freak

    • Joe Holst at 9:13 pm

      I agree Dana is a baby, you could lump the UFC as an organization into that category since many of their practices are put in place by Dana.

      Where we disagree is the statement about Randy. I dont think Dana is asking Randy to lay down, but going to a rival organization when the UFC is the organization that helped Randy Couture to be a household name is disloyal to say the least. Had Randy made his name in Pride or another organization he would not be the person he is today. Many of the names that made it in Pride are now trying (and have done so successfully in many cases) to come to the UFC.

      That said I'm not a fan of the new Randy or the UFC, personally.

    • Sam Gardner at 9:08 pm

      Petty? If you built a platform that allowed a guy to become famous and allowed him to earn millions of dollars working for you, then he goes and signs with a direct competitor with you, not once, but three times, how would you react?

    • Brendle Tee at 9:20 pm

      Yes but without fighters like randy rampage insert whoever dana white disrespects dana and the fertitta brothers would be no where. Dana acts like a girl on her period all the time. And last time i checked it was couture getting his teeth knocked out by machida not dana. Maybe if he showed more respect and appreciation they would not be going to other fight leagues.

    • Sam Gardner at 9:39 pm

      You didn't answer my question: How would you feel about a guy who you paid millions of bucks and made famous, and was still on your pay roll until recently, going to a competitor bent on taking part of your market share? How would you feel if this person has done this to you 3 times? Dana (and the Fertitas) provided the platform for Randy to fight, they took the financial risk to build a place Randy could exhibit his skills and earn his fame. It was a relationship both benefitted from, and Randy was disloyal, time and time again.

    • Christopher James Perilli at 11:03 pm

      you sound like Dana's cheerleader. Do you know the entire story behind why Couture bounced and was "selfish"? I love how you put it… HE allowed Randy to become famous and allowed him to make money? last time i checked we didn't live in a communist country where people fought for food… He grew the UFC brand just as MUCH as Dana did, him and Liddell were 2 huge faces of the UFC> Dana held up couture in contracts and didn't pay him nearly as much as liddell even after liddell showed up stumbling to interviews, and lost his last 2 fights. Liddell wasn't even 40.. Couture took it to people well into his 40's I don't think Randy has anything to prove to anyone and disloyalty to whom? his families mouths, or Danas mouth? If that is a choice I would have to make be I would make it in a heart beat the exact same way. It's pretty evident Dana cares about the money and only the money, otherwise he would pay his fighters a hell of a lot more money, even the top tier fighters don't make a smidgeon of what boxing does and the UFC PPV's are inching closer and closer steadily. Gotta always remember you can't have a movie without actors, as you can't have a fight league without fighters, and you can't have a famous fight league without STAR fighters, please don't discount any mans hard work, Dana, Randy or Chuck, these men put in the time, you or me did not to say a man made another man is really feminine in my opinion. We are all men and we make ourselves with help from others, but each man put's their blood sweat in tears in to make blanket statements is just short sighted.

    • Sam Gardner at 2:16 am

      Never discounted any hard work by Randy. He was a great fighter, but he made choices based on what was best for Randy in the moment. Dana is concerned about he entire UFC brand, so of course he is concerned with money. Which of Randy's decisions were not concerned with money? That is a stupid argument "Dana is only concerned with money." Randy on two occassions violated his contract with the UFC and went looking to fight elsewhere looking to make more money. Dana "held Randy up in contracts" because Randy violated them. You'd do the same thing if one of your employees quit and violated a non-compete clause standard in many contracts. My point is that Dana's reaction is anything but petty. Nothing involving the potential for millions of dollars is petty.

    • James Gasco at 8:10 am

      It's petty. It's a business at the end of the day. Move on there will be plenty of fighters to worry about. He'll make more millions off of somebody else. Don't make it a personal problem.

    • Sam Gardner at 11:20 am

      I don't think it is a personal problem, it is business, a business problem. Petty would be to cut the son for the father's actions. Instead he offered the kid the chance to leave if he felt uncomfortable in the situation, but made sure the kid knew the UFC wanted him. Petty would be to hold up the son in contractual limbo to punish him for the father's deeds. Sounds like Dana was being pretty fair to the kid and has been more than fair to Randy.

  2. Anthony Vee at 10:27 pm

    You guys are taking it to the extreme like Dana did. Bellator is not a "rival" organization, they are a step down "trying" to make it BIG like the UFC. How can a man be ran by the UFC if he's Not a fighter in that organization anymore, that's just lame. Randy should be free to do whatever he wants as he's just trying to make money and help others out? As a fighter in the UFC you can't do Anything outside of it? You can't even do a BJJ or grappling match in the PAN AMS, Worlds, or Abu Dhabi… UFC heads are like dictators now!

  3. Scott Feist at 12:36 am

    I keep hearing that the UFC built Randy Coutures name and made him famous…..REALLY? Did the UFC UNDER Dana White exist when Randy entered the UFC or mma for that matter, did the UFC give him the belts in 2 weight classes, did the UFC put in the decades of sweat and rigorous training it takes to EARN a championship belt, were people paying pay per view to see Dana and the "UFC" logo, etc etc etc.? Ummm I'm pretty sure Randy Couture did ALL of those tbings and etched a name in the HALL OF FAME based on his performance career wise. The UFC is a platform. and a venue. If he hadnt done it there he would have done it somewhere elae. The UFC GOES AFTER THE BEST FIGHTERS BECAUSE THEY, THE FIGHTERS ARE WHO MAKE THE UFC. Bet your ass any and all of the former fighters who have signed and fight for other organizations TODAY are allowed to buy tickets to these public events and there are hundreds of them. I personally know several that train at my gym. Any person who reads this and trains in any of the top gyms knows this is absolutely true. This is just bad blood and Dana flexing his bitch ass muscle. If this organization wouldnt buy out and monopolize this market the way they do the best fighters would be scattered around all the previous and current venues and the UFC WOULD BE THIN in all weight classes. Of course these guys want to go there, they pay more. I thought it was great that Strikeforce was turning out good cards and top notch fighters and then of course the UFC came along and absorbed them just like they will Bellator when some of the phenominal figyters they have start making waves. I guarantee though that if they pay more and market themselves properly, they will be a force and then, when the UFC comes along, guess who they will be negotiating with or for. Very smart business move Randy. He knows that day will come or if it doesnt, then Bellator will be a success. win win for him.

    • Sam Gardner at 2:12 pm

      The UFC can buy those companies bc economically they are failing. They might have excellent fights, but they don't know how to run a company to make money. The UFC did that, by hook or by crook, and the others couldn't. That is why they failed or were willing to sell. Bellator has Viacom backing it, making it a legit "threat" to the UFC. Randy joining Bellator is a slap in the face to the UFC, it is bad for the UFC's business, and Dana reacted as such. For Randy, the jury is out if it was a good move or not…time will tell. But my guess is that since the general public thinks MMA is synonmous with UFC, this Bellator thing, to the mainstream public, will be ignored. I could be wrong.
      Do not discount the importance of the platform and venue. Without Zuffa taking over the UFC, MMA might have remained the underground sub-culture of meatheads and never become mainstream. Randy's pre-Zuffa success, although awesome, would be pretty much worthless without the current success of the UFC under Zuffa. If you take A-Rod, Jeter, etc. and put them out on a local ball field and let them play, they'd be great to watch, but no one would care. People only care if the performance is done on a recognized platform, and the UFC built that platform. That's why I don't see Dana's reaction as petty at all.

  4. Brian Schuster at 1:55 pm

    You guys are misquoting here and misrepresenting the people you're talking about. Dana didn't say "kids dream of being in the UFC", that was Ryan's response to Dana when Dana asked Ryan if he wanted to stay with the UFC. Also, Couture didn't say "the only thing he got from me was his last name" he said something along the lines of he's his own man and sometimes even having my last name is a burden. What unbelievably sloppy reporting. You guys suck. MMA Fighting for the real story, forget these clowns.

    • Erik Fontanez at 12:12 pm


      I was at both of these press conferences. I heard Dana and Randy say both these quotes, and they’re quite accurate. I think you’ve been mislead, my friend.


      Erik Fontanez
      Assistant Editor

  5. Scott Feist at 2:29 pm

    Okay Sam , it appears that you have some relation and insight here as if you may be linked to Dana based on your argument only. However and regardless, these issues all occurred while Randy was still a UFC fighter under contract. He then came back, completed his contract, just as many fighters have who endorse and support other venues and fight promotions and organizations. He has not been under any contract or business obligation whatsoever since retiring so if he wants to move forward and endorse other promotions and further his career after retiring thats his business not Dana's. Dana is definitely abusing his position of authority by not even allowing him to buy a ticket. That is a game. His treatment of Ryan is to be expected because Ryan is now under contract and to release him would be to violate the contractual agreement. So what he says is your dad cant corner or even attend your fights. I'll presume Dana may have expected Ryan to be loyal or what Dana considers to be loyal to his father, so he offers a way out of the contract whereby cutting complete ties. Sorta backfires and now he stays. I truly hope Ryan is extremely successful and that Randy hires some badass atty and finds a reason to sue for not being allowed a ticket to these public events. He certainly cpuld point out many many other previous successful fighters who have gone on after retiring or completing contract then supported other promotions but are still allowed a ticket. That would be awesome. If you dont getvthat point, then I'm gonna have to believe you are affiliated with Dana and here to do nothing but defend his sorry baby ass. And that is all

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