Patrick Cote Steps Up to Face Cung Le at UFC 148 in Las Vegas

Matthew RothFeatured ColumnistMay 30, 2012

CHICAGO- OCTOBER 25:  Patrick Cote cannot continue the fight in the second round, after he injured his knee in the Middleweight Title Bout at UFC's Ultimate Fight Night at Allstate Arena on October 25, 2008 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)
Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

The game of MMA musical chairs continues.

Earlier on Wednesday, it was announced that Rich Franklin would be stepping up to replace Vitor Belfort in the main event of UFC 147 against Wanderlei Silva. This announcement came as a bit of a shock as Rich Franklin was already scheduled to face Cung Le at UFC 148

Le hinted earlier on Twitter that word of his new opponent would be released Wednesday night. It has been announced by MMAJunkie that Le's new opponent is one-time UFC middleweight title challenger Patrick Côté, though nothing has been officially signed.

Côté is currently riding a four-fight winning streak since his departure and is an 11-fight veteran in the UFC. He holds notable wins over Ricardo Almeida and Scott Smith. He was also unsuccessful in two title fights while in the promotion. 

Cung Le is a former Strikeforce middleweight champion and a Sanshou standout. He made his UFC debut at UFC 139 against Wanderlei Silva. He suffered a TKO loss when Silva was able to batter his face and body with knees and punches. He also posted a gruesome photo on Twitter afterwards of his broken nose. Cung Le hopes to pick up his first UFC victory in his fight against Côté.

UFC 148 takes place in Las Vegas on July 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.