ryan-couture-7.jpg(This story appeared in today’s print edition of USA TODAY.)

Ryan Couture always knew his last name would be a blessing and a curse.

The son of UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture knew that following in his father’s fighting footsteps would mean dealing with the spotlight every step of the way.

“It’s opened a lot of doors for me, and there’s no way with so few fights that I would be in the position I’m in right now if it wasn’t for my last name, so I owe a lot to it,” Ryan Couture told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) and USA TODAY Sports.

“It’s also opened me up to some extra criticism and set the bar much higher that I have to strive to meet. But I’ve enjoyed the challenge, and I think it’s sort of lit that fire under me that I’ve needed to get to the level I’m at in the time that it’s taken.”

Couture (6-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) makes his UFC debut April 6, facing British lightweight Ross Pearson (14-6 MMA, 6-3 UFC) in the co-main event of “UFC on Fuel TV 9: Gustafsson vs. Mousasi” at Stockholm’s Ericsson Globe Arena (Fuel TV, 2 p.m. ET).

“With every fight, competing in the UFC seemed more like (it) was going to be a reality,” says Couture, who fought for Strikeforce before the UFC’s sister promotion closed shop in January. “I felt I was proving more to myself and everyone else every time out. Going from the prelims on a Strikeforce event to the co-main event of a UFC card is a major step up. It’s going to be a great fight and a hell of an experience.”

Despite his status as MMA royalty, Randy Couture and his former UFC employers haven’t always been on the best of terms. A recent dispute, stemming from Couture’s new business relationship with rival organization Bellator MMA, means dad won’t be in his son’s corner for the historic moment when Ryan becomes the first child of a UFC veteran to appear in the octagon.

“It’s a bummer things went the way they did, but I feel Dad made the decision he felt was best for him, and I respect that,” says Couture, 30. “I’m not thrilled he can’t be there, but at the end of the day, I’ve still got to fight, so I’m just making the most of it and working with what I’ve got.”

Where that will take him remains to be seen. But he insists he’s not trying to live up to anyone’s expectations but his own.

“You just have to tell people, ‘Hey, I’m not him,’” Couture says. “I never said that I was setting out to achieve what he achieved. I’ve always been pretty clear that I’m just doing stuff that I love and trying to do it the best that I can.”

For more on UFC on FUEL TV 9, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Video: Watch today's UFC Q&A with Overeem, Eye, Chiesa at 8:30 p.m. ET

  • 21 days ago
  • 1 views

ADELAIDE, Australia – Prior to today’s UFC Fight Night 65 fighter weigh-ins, you can watch a live video stream of a Q&A session with Alistair Overeem, Jessica Eye and Michael Chiesa at 8:30 p.m. ET ( read news >>

UFC veteran Corey Hill dead at 36, reports manager

  • 14 days ago
  • 318 views

Former UFC fighter Corey Hill died today at a hospital in Tampa, Fla., several days after suffering a collapsed lung and heart attack. He was 36.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>

UFC fighter tweets Reebok sponsorship payment numbers

  • 23 days ago
  • 837 views

The UFC today sent an email to fighters and managers detailing the promotion’s compensation tiers under a Reebok sponsorship deal set to take effect in July.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>

NSAC overhauls drug testing policy, implements multiyear suspensions for steroid users

  • 14 days ago
  • 7 views

Consider the hammer dropped. Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) today (Fri., May 15, 2015) announced a new-and-improved drug testing policy, one that is designed to deter -- and severely punish read news >>

UFC Fight Night 66 live and official weigh-in results

  • 14 days ago
  • 3 views

PASAY, Philippines – UFC Fight Night 66 weigh-ins take place today, and you can join us for live text results beginning at 7 a.m. ET (4 a.m. PT).Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Bellator 137 video highlights: Champ Brandon Halsey wins big, but stripped of title

  • 13 days ago
  • 40 views

Win or lose in Friday’s Bellator 137 headliner, Brandon Halsey knew his reign as Bellator MMA middleweight champion was over. Still, he made the most of a bad situation.Filed under: Bellator, Feature read news >>

Former Nevada State Athletic Commission chair Bill Brady steps down from commission

  • 21 days ago
  • 10 views

Bill Brady today stepped down as a commissioner with the Nevada State Athletic Commission after eight years on the job. Filed under: News read news >>

TUF 21 Finale Caps Off Stacked International Fight Week in Las Vegas

  • 11 days ago
  • 1 views

UFC announced today that The Ultimate Fighter Finale, originally scheduled for South Florida, will now cap off the 4th annual UFC International Fight Week (IFW) in Las Vegas. read news >>

Watch The MMA Beat live today

  • a day ago
  • 5 views

On Thursday's episode of "The MMA Beat," the panel will discuss the UFC 187 aftermath, new issues with the Reebok deal, Wanderlei Silva, and much more. Watch "The MMA Beat" live today at 1 p.m. ET / read news >>

Neil Magny, UFC Fight Night 66's 'Fighter to watch' today in Manila

  • 13 days ago
  • 3 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) serves up breakfast in bed for the second time in a month as the fight promotion brings a thrilling UFC Fight Night 66 card to Manila, Philippines, this morning ( read news >>