MMA legend to host charity poker tournament

Jamie Gold
Is this the face of a man who can knock out Randy Couture at the poker table?

Randy "The Natural" Couture is preparing to take his fight outside of the octagon to raise some money for charity. The Mixed Martial Arts legend will host "Operation All In," a charity poker tournament, Jan. 12 from 1-6 p.m. at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

The tournament will benefit the Xtreme Couture GI Foundation, which was formed by Randy Couture and his wife Kim to raise money and awareness for armed forces members who were wounded in action and their families.

Couture is a UFC Champion who is also a veteran of the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division. He started the foundation after visiting the amputees at Brooke Amy Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas.

According to a press release, Couture was brought to tears seeing the young men and women who'd given their all for the nation's freedom, many of whom now have to go through life's challenges without arms and legs or with traumatic brain injuries.

The foundation offers several programs to help these wounded vets such as the Urgent Financial Needs program which assists families in financial crisis who have been referred to the foundation by the Military Severely Injured Center.

The foundation also hosts an Xtreme Weekend during which wounded soldiers get to spend a weekend of motivation and inspiration with Couture. The foundation also plans to host an annual Memorial Day Tribute Event as a fundraiser.

Now poker players can ante up for the cause as well by playing in the $550 buy-in event with $200 re-buys, which will feature poker pros, celebrities and perhaps some other MMA stars as well.

Jamie Gold, 2006 World Series of Poker Main Event winner, has already confirmed he'll be joining in. Dean Cain, who starred as Superman in Lois and Clark, is also planning to attend.

The event will also feature a silent auction and a live DJ. The tournament will be open for the public to watch as well.

Anyone interested in playing in the tournament to support the cause can purchase tickets through the Hard Rock Hotel box office at (800) 473-7625 or at HardRockHotel.com, or through Xtreme Couture MMA at (702) 616-1022 or at XtremeCoutureGIFoundation.org.

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