Coming off of a victory over Rich Franklin at UFC on Fuel TV 6 in November, the promotion's first event ever in China, former Strikeforce champion Cung Le couldn't have been happier.
After losing his Octagon debut to Wanderlei Silva then bouncing back with a unanimous decision victory over Patrick Cote that left him injured, the 40-year-old Sanshou specialist wasn't sure where his future was headed. A dozen or so movie roles to his credit, Le could easily forgo the bumps and bruises and broken bones for a life in film.
He couldn't, however, pass on the opportunity to headline the UFC's first event in China. So he worked around his injury, returned to the Octagon early, and knocked out Franklin – a former UFC champion – inside of the first round.
That victory and some tweaks to his approach to training has inspired Le to keep fighting. That and speculation that UFC middleweight kingpin Anderson Silva and his camp wanted a bout with Le.
The Anderson Silva fight never materialized – the UFC had different plans for Silva, who faces Chris Weidman at UFC 162 in July – but Le is chomping at the bit, ready to step back in the Octagon.
His one stipulation? The bigger, the better.