Mark Coleman Talks Near Fight vs. Brock Lesnar, Pride Grand Prix, More

The Top Turtle MMA Podcast on FloCombat recently had the opportunity to chat with MMA legend Mark Coleman. Here's what they discussed. 

On the 2000 Pride Open Weight Grand Prix

When asked where the Pride Grand Prix fits in his career accolades, Mark Coleman doesn’t quite know the words to use. Instead, he relies on his reaction at the time to portray him emotions. 

“If you’ve ever seen the celebration after Igor [Vovchanchyn] taps, if you’ve never seen it, check it out, that tells how I felt,” Coleman recalls. “It was just unexplainable.”

Some of that emotion comes from the fact that he felt underestimated and underappreciated going into the tournament. 

“I was counted out for the dead, I had no chance of winning that tournament,” he said. “Pride did not want me winning that tournament.”

While he insists that the heads of the company would prefer Royce Gracie, Mark Kerr or Sakuraba to take home the victory, Coleman never had a doubt in his mind that it would be him. 

"I knew I was going to win that tournament,” Coleman said. 

On his return to the UFC 

After spending years in Japan in Pride (although one of those bouts was in the U.S.), Coleman was ready to return to the place where he got his start. When the UFC bought out Pride’s assets, Coleman saw his opening, but the UFC was not as immediately as perceptive as he hoped. 

“They decided to put me in the Hall of Fame when they came to Columbus, Ohio,” Coleman said. “As great as that is, I want to fight.”

Eventually they buckled to his pressure but were not all that willing to work with him on what a return would look like. 

“They finally offered me one right before the induction,” he said. “They offered me a contract and said it was non-negotiable—take it or leave it.”

On being offered Brock Lesnar

Upon being resigned to the UFC, Mark Coleman was working on changing his weight class. However, that didn’t stop the UFC from planning a bout with one of the biggest dudes—literally—in the promotion.

“They offered me Brock Lesnar,” Coleman said. “I was like, 'Damn, I was already heading down to 205 pounds.'" 

And the difference in size was something that Coleman was acutely aware of. 

“I was weighing about 225 pounds at the most. Brock Lesnar, let’s face it, man, he’s a 275-pound monster,” he admitted. “Hey, size matters—I said that from the beginning. Royce Gracie said size doesn’t matter. I said it does.”

While an injury occurred before the bout was even announced, it didn’t stop Coleman from offering to go ahead with the fight anyway. 

“I said, ‘Hell yeah, I’ll fight him.' Maybe it was a blessing by the Lord—I tore my MCL,” Coleman said. “I said, 'Listen, if you guys are going to cut me, I’ll fight him with my knee the way it is.'" 

Wait, Kali Robbins Likes Unfrosted Pop Tarts?

Everyone loves a good nickname origin story. Whether it comes from working at Subway or a fighter’s uncanny resemblance to a popular TV figure, a good unique nickname always trumps the standard-issued "Pitbull" or "Hitman." 

V3Fights 75 Preview, Breakdown: How To Watch Live On FloCombat

By Michael Fiedel

Saturday, June 15, V3Fights will touch down at Minglewood Hall in Memphis, Tennessee, with a loaded card streaming exclusively on FloCombat. 

Top Turtle MMA: Ranking The Top 5 Contender Series Vets, More

Contender Series is back!

And we're celebrating the return of MMA on Tuesday nights by talking with two fighters who hope to earn their UFC contracts this Tuesday. Brok Weaver looks to represent him people and become the voice of the Mowa Choctaw people, and Kali Robbins looks to show that the nickname Pop Tart doesn't mean she's easy to finish.

Cage Titans FC 44: 3 Reasons To Watch Joe Giannetti, More On FloCombat

null

Unlock this video, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

By Michael Fiedel

This Saturday, June 15, New England-based regional powerhouse Cage Titans brings Cage Titans FC 44 live to Plymouth Memorial Hall in Plymouth, Massachusetts, streaming at 6 PM ET, exclusively on FloCombat. 

Top Turtle MMA Podcast: Top 5 Potential MMA '30 For 30' Topics

The UFC is back this week with their most loaded show of the year, UFC 238, so we’re loading our show too. Since the card is all about the bantamweights, so are we. We’ll be talking to Jimmie Rivera and Aljamain Sterling about the main event and their place in the title picture. Plus, we’ll break down out favorite fights from Chicago. 

UFC 238: Aljamain Sterling Bringing 'Human Backpack' To Pedro Munhoz

null

If Aljamain Sterling wants a fight with the winner of Saturday’s UFC 238 main event between Henry Cejudo and Marlon Moraes, he knows he needs to first defeat Pedro Munhoz—and look good doing it. 

Fight Of The Night Magnet Frank Camacho Admits 'I Hate Confrontation'

Frank Camacho holds the distinction of being just one of three fighters to start their UFC career with three straight Fight of the Night bonuses. Justin Gaethje and Yoshihiro Akiyama are the others. It seems like every fight Camacho's in becomes a knock-em-down, drag-em-out brawl. But according to Camacho, that is not necessarily by design. 

June Preview: UFC Vets, Cowboy, Midwest Brawls, NCAA Stars, more

You won’t have to wait until July for summer fireworks this year. FloCombat is bringing all of the explosions you’ll need to kick off summer fun in style.

Top Turtle MMA: UFC Fight Night 153 Preview, Top 5 WEC Unsung Heroes, More

After a long week away from UFC action, we return this week talking about UFC in Stockholm. 

Dear Bellator MMA, Sign Nick Newell

At this stage in the game, Nick Newell’s story isn’t an unfamiliar one to MMA fans.

Born a congenital amputee, Connecticut’s Newell has overcome almost every challenge he’s faced. Whether it be inside the cage or out of it, Newell has continually conquered the toughest tests life throws at him.