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After a Year on Sidelines, Kim Couture Ready to Resume MMA Career

Kim CoutureKim Couture will compete in the co-main event spot on the Nov. 20 Strikeforce Challengers show in Kansas City, Mo., 364 days after her last MMA fight.

Her opponent will be Kerry Vera, the wife of UFC light heavyweight fighter Brandon Vera, and the bout will be contested six days after Brandon Vera faces Couture's ex-husband, Randy Couture, in the main event of UFC 105.

"I think it was a brilliant idea on Strikeforce's part," Kim Couture recently told FanHouse.

"I didn't really think about that, because I don't think at the time I knew that Randy was fighting Brandon, but I thought it was ironic when I found out. It's a good story; it's a sexy story."

Vera, a former kickboxer, made her MMA debut in May at Bellator 6, defeating Leslie Smith via unanimous decision. Afterward, the fight was hailed as one of the best women's fights of the year, thanks in large part to Vera's exciting striking style.

"I think she's great," Couture said of Vera. "I think she's a great fighter and I think she's a great person. She's very technical. She's got a lot of boxing in her background, and she's been out there fighting for about nine years."

Couture's MMA debut in June 2008 turned out to be a bloody mess in which she also broke her jaw in a loss to Kim Rose. She then defeated an overwhelmed Lina Kvokov on a Strikeforce show last November. The 34-year-old was scheduled to fight Miesha Tate in May, but withdrew because of personal issues.

Despite hearing critics still say she isn't fully focused on her MMA career, Couture maintains that she isn't looking to make any statements in her next fight.

"I don't have anything to prove to anybody. But I have been working pretty hard and training for a year and I haven't fought yet. I've only had three weeks off from doing two-a-days for the past year," she said.

"I took three weeks off after I was supposed to fight Miesha and got right back to it a few weeks later, and have been training this whole time. I was training hard for a fight that I didn't have booked, and then they came to me and said, 'Hey, do you want to fight Kerry?' I was already ready to go."

Couture says she has been approached to fight for Japanese organizations DEEP and DREAM, but the match-ups offered never made sense to her. And while she doesn't have a long-term contract with Strikeforce, she promises that she will never fight for any promoter in the US other than Scott Coker.

In a perfect world, she would like to fight four times in 2010. She was expecting to fight a few more times this past year but the Strikeforce purchase of EliteXC assets and her divorce put a wrench in those plans. She is getting ready to launch an MMA equipment and women's fight gear line soon, but most importantly, Couture says she can't wait to finally return to action

"I've been training all damn year for fights that haven't happened," she said while laughing.

"I'm chomping at the bit; I can't wait. It's going to be good."

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