Patrick Cote has had a long road back to becoming a UFC fighter. A one time challenger for Anderson Silva's middleweight title, he's had a lot of time to reflect on what he needed to change in his training camp and life style if he ever wanted to get back into the Octagon.
After stringing together four wins outside of the organization, he got his opportunity to return when Rich Franklin was pulled from his match against Cung Le to replace Vitor Belfort at UFC 147. For Cote, after falling from the big show and seeing life away from the UFC, he was desperate for another shot.
"I went to the middle of nowhere in my last fight. Amazon forests very deep in Brazil. It was a good life experience and I'm telling you right now, I enjoy this more today because of that," Cote told Bleacher Report. "I enjoy this and I don't want to go back there. I want to stay in the UFC. You're like a rock star when you're here and you have to enjoy it and appreciate it."
Perspective is the key word for Patrick. After 11 fights in the UFC and an overall record of 4-7 in the promotion, he recognized that he was doing a lot of things wrong in the gym.
"I'm not back for one fight. I'm back because I want to make another run at the title. I've been there before and I was doing maybe half of what I'm doing in training now. I'm doing right now what I should have been doing three or four years ago." He added, "I feel good. I have my hands full. Cung is no joke and I'm still very very confident. I did my homework and I'm ready to go."
Even though he was no longer under contract with Zuffa, he never thought about signing with another organization. For him, the end goal was always to return to the UFC.
"In my head I was still a UFC fighter. Even if I wasn't fighting in the big show. A lot of people asked me to go to other organizations, pretty big organizations. In my head and my heart I was still in the UFC. As a fighter I was still working for the company."
Finally, as a man who has faced Anderson Silva, and the first to take the champion out of the second round in the UFC, he spoke about the legend that is the Spider.
"Fighting Anderson Silva is very complicated. Not just physically but mentally it's very very complicated. I think the first fight when he fought Sonnen he was surprised by the pace. He looks pretty pissed now and that's not a good sign."
Patrick Coté fights against Cung Le at UFC 148 on July 7th.