UFC 139: With a Little Help From My Friends – Cung Le Finally Catches a Break in The UFC
There’s an old Spanish saying; “there’s no christening without a godfather,” and that is absolutely true in most cases. Sometimes in life you just need a little push from someone who’s connected on the inside.
And that my friends seems to be the case with former Strikeforce middleweight champion Cung Le. Yes, I know, Dana said many times he would’ve liked Cung Le to be in the UFC many times before and even Cung Le was heard saying if he didn’t fight inthe UFC he wouldn’t fight again.
“I know for a fact that if I do fight again, it’s going to be in the UFC. I’ve never fought in the UFC, but I would love to fight in the UFC. But right now because of my contract with Showtime and Strikeforce, hopefully things can work out… I would love to fight in San Jose for the UFC and for Dana White and Lorenzo (Fertitta),” Le told MMA Weekly late last summer.
If we go back to mid-2008, Dana White stated that he wanted Cung Le in the UFC and that he had a lot ofrespect for him. Now fast forward to some months after the acquisition of Strikeforce by Zuffa (and all its fighters salivating with thoughts of crossing over to the UFC), a slew if Strikeforce fighters took to twitter and other social media to ask for shots at the big stage of MMA.
Going back in time again, specifically to late July 2011, Dan Henderson twitted the following:
Of course, Dan Henderson asking the UFC brass doesn’t necessarily guarantees that management will comply, but apparently, it did help.
An avalanche of tweets by fans and other fighters poured down the tweet-sphere asking for Le to get a chance to fight not only at the biggest MMA show in the world, but in front of his hometown crowd. The same crowd that saw him make his professional MMA debut.
Yes, of course it’s valid to rile people up in support of a cause and try to use your “connections” to persuade the powers behind the wheel to grant you your wish. Only fair questions to ask are, why did they wait so long if they wanted him in the show? If this event had not been in San Jose, would Cung Le be fighting in it? How much of wanting to harness power over the local crowd is behind the decision of bringing Le into UFC?
And hey, don’t even think for a minute that we don’t recognize Cung Le’s credentials as a seriously dangerous opponent to any middleweight in any MMA promotion, but did he earn the shot, or was this just a case of a lot of big names pushing to get him in?
Le took exception to comments we made on Twitter about Dan Henderson asking UFC to grant Le a shot,we certainly didn’t mean to offend or diminish his credibility as a MMA fighter, we are just entitled to our own opinions.
Cung Le was granted his shot and now he faces MMA legend Wanderlei Silva who is coming off a ugly knockout at the hands of Chris Leben and some people seem to think Cung Le was fed and easy fight just to make him look good in front of his local crowd.
Of course, anyone who says Wanderlei Silva is an easy fight surely hasn’t learned his MMA ABC’s all too well but, is Wanderlei Silva at the top of his game or at the top of today’s MMA level of competition?
Certain experts and enthusiasts of this, the greatest sport in the world, seem to think otherwise and don’t give “The Axe Murderer” a lot of chances against such a precise and acute striker like Cung Le, but where would a win over Silva take Cung Le?
How far into a title run would beating Wanderlei Silva would push Cung Le’s aspirations inside the promotion? Then again you can ask yourself, what’s left in the UFC middleweight division? The winner of Michael Bisping and Jason Miller facing the winner of Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen?
If Cung Le makes a statement and successfully starts a run for the UFC middleweight title it would be very refreshing for the fans to see the division open up a bit and maybe give hopes to those who can’t wait for the “Spidernitys” breakout to clear out.
What do you think? Does Cung Le deserve to be in the UFC? How well do you think he will performe against the UFC middleweight roster?
Anyway, we are glad to see Mr. Cung Le finally set foot inside the Octagon, with a little help from his friends.
Thanks for reading.
Originally posted at The MMA Truth.