After looking unimpressive in his second round submission loss to Randy Couture at UFC 109: Relentless last night, UFC President Dana White alluded to Mark Coleman’s UFC career likely being over.
“I think tonight was probably Coleman’s last fight in the UFC,” White stated at the UFC 109 post-fight press conference. “[He’s] always been a stand-up guy with me and he’ll always be a part of this organization. I just think he’ll have a hard time competing with the guys at the top level… Age is a factor for him. He went in there and he wasn’t able to do anything. He didn’t get off. Randy pretty much beat him everywhere.
“It’s tough to say it’s over,” White continued. “It’s the hardest thing in the world and I hate dealing with it. It sucks.”
The 45-year old former UFC heavyweight champion was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame at UFC 82 in March of 2008. He then announced his return to the UFC for UFC 87, his first time competing in the organization since he dropped a split-decision to Pedro Rizz at UFC 18 in 1999. Coleman was slated to face Brock Lesnar at the event, however that bout never materialized after Coleman suffered an injury in training.
Coleman ended up making his Octagon return last year, suffering a third-round TKO loss to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 93: Franklin vs. Henderson, which garnered “Fight Of The Night” honors. Coleman’s impressive showing earned him a bout on the preliminary card of UFC 100, where he pulled out an upset unanimous decision win over Stephan Bonnar.
Coleman’s bout with Couture last night was the first time two UFC Hall of Famers squared off in the organization. Couture dominated the contest before submitting Coleman in the second round with a rear-naked choke.