Mike Chiapetta reports that Shawn Tompkins, Randy Couture's former partner at Xtreme Couture is training Randy's upcoming opponent Mark Coleman for UFC 109:
"It's just business," Tompkins said of the upcoming bout. "Anyone who's ever spoken to Randy, as far as competition, that's how he feels, too.
"For Randy, it's about the fight, not the drama," Tompkins continued. "He's real cool about it. We talked about it. I let his camp know first. I started working with Mark for the Stephan Bonnar fight [at UFC 100]. I have my own team now, and this is how I make my living and how my family survives, so if Mark Coleman comes to me and asks me to coach him in a matchup against another UFC Hall of Famer, I'm going to say yes. It's nothing personal. It should happen for the sport and the fans, and when it's all said and done, Randy and I will still be friends, and I'll still respect him for everything he's done for me."
But Tompkins does make it clear it was his differences with the way things were being done at Xtreme Couture that led him to leave:
"One thing that didn't really work well for me at Xtreme Couture was every fighter having their own staffs," he said. "If you're going to take this sport seriously, that doesn't seem to work out too well. I've always had my own thoughts on the best way to do it. Now these fighters that are training with me at TapouT are with me specifically as a part of Team Tompkins. What it comes down to is we get to coordinate and make sure they get what's best for them."
In addition to Mark Coleman, Tompkins is training Vitor Belfort, Sam Stout, Evan Dunham, Chris Horodecki, Junie Browning, and George Roop and others.