The 29-year-old Ryan Couture is just four fights into his pro career but all four have been on nationally televised Showtime cards. He was coming off a loss, but showed that he’s learning what his strengths are and playing to them.
Couture was a solid high school wrestler and he’s taken his MMA grappling to another level, but when he lost to Matt Ricehouse back in June he relied too much on his striking. Friday, he went back to his bread and butter to score a split decision victory, 29-28, 29-28 and 28-28, and distroyed Watson by the final minutes of the fight.
“He’s tough as nails. That was not that fun, but I’m real glad to get the W,” Couture said. “Some things went according to plan and other things I didn’t do as well. I wasn’t very sharp when he was on top.”
Couture (4-1) turned to his grappling from the opening seconds of the fight when he jumped on Watson’s back and got the fight to the mat. He controlled him on the ground and worked for various chokes for nearly four minutes. With 45 seconds left, Watson was able to escape and get top control. He got off a nasty elbow to slice open a bloody cut on Couture’s forehead.
In the second, Couture once again got the fight to the mat and controlled things until two minutes left. This time when Watson, got top control he got off nasty elbows and most of his shots went unanswered. In third, Couture got it to the ground for the final 3:45 of the fight to seal the victory.