Cung Le vs. Patrick Cote: What's Next for the 2 Middleweights

Vince Carey@@vcareymmaContributor IJuly 8, 2012

Photo Credit: Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC
Photo Credit: Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC

With huge fights like Silva-Sonnen II and Griffin-Ortiz III on the card, it's easy to see why the vast majority of fight fans overlooked Cung Le and Patrick Cote this week.

Le was coming off a disappointing loss to Wanderlei Silva in the UFC 139 co-main event. And instead of fighting his original opponent for this card, Rich Franklin, he was stuck fighting a guy who was making his return to the Octagon after being cut a year earlier.

Cote was even worse off than his opponent. After suffering a knee injury during his UFC middleweight title fight against Anderson Slva in 2008, Cote lost his next two fights inside the UFC and was forced to spend much of the last two years on the regional scene picking up wins against journeymen and other UFC castoffs.

While these two didn’t get much buzz before their fight, they definitely proved their worth to the UFC, engaging in a decent slugfest that helped save the early portion of a card that featured too many boring decisions and lightning-quick stoppages that quite literally left fans wanting more.

While Le and Cote didn’t even get a Fight of the Night bonus for their efforts, both guys are going to be hanging around in the UFC’s middleweight division and could end up being some of the best can’t-miss fighters in the organization.

What’s Next for Le?

Hopefully a bout with the aforementioned Rich Franklin is in the cards.

Both Le and Franklin looked decently impressive in their last fights, and it would be an awesome fight for the fans.

Dana White shot us a quick hint as to what’s next for Le at the post-fight press conference. He told the San Jose-based fighter to “Get ready to fight in China,” and Le seemed on board with the idea.

UFC China: Le vs Franklin?

Sounds like a solid main event, especially for a Fuel TV card.

What’s Next for Cote?

If there’s one thing Patrick Cote needs to get, it’s an easy opponent inside the Octagon.

Cote’s last few UFC fights have been against stiff competition. “The Predator” hasn’t earned himself a UFC win in over four years, leaving him in serious jeopardy of getting cut if he loses his fifth straight bout in the UFC.

A fight against Riki Fukuda, who lost on the night’s preliminary portion of the card, would be a fun contrast of styles, and if Cote can keep it upright, he’ll likely win.