This weekend former UFC middleweight champ Rich Franklin will look to put together his first winning streak since 2008 when he beat Travis Lutter and Matt Hamill in back-to-back bouts. Since then Franklin has alternated between wins and losses with his latest fight involving an outpointing of Wanderlei Silva at UFC 147.
Now, with Cung Le on the immediate horizon, Franklin is in a position to move one step closer to a potential rematch with champion Anderson Silva before calling it a career. However, “Ace” is looking past Le even if he’s confident he’ll come out on top, focusing on the task at hand rather than a title-shot he may never receive regardless of performance.
“I have to be motivated to beat Cung and that’s it. I have Cung on November 10th, and it doesn’t matter what comes after that, and it’s not important,” explained Franklin in an interview with MMAWeekly. “What’s important right now is winning that fight because if I didn’t win that fight those opportunities aren’t going to come anyways. It doesn’t matter whether I’d be motivated by them or not.”
“I don’t believe they’re going to give me a title fight after this,” continued the 38-year old, remaining realistic on the matter. “I believe there’s going to be another step in that process, and I don’t know who that would be, if it would be somebody like Michael Bisping, or something like that, but winning a fight always puts you in the right direction.”
Franklin concluded by saying he knows the UFC isn’t currently looking to put him in a third tilt with Silva but, with a few more wins under his belt, they might be willing to change their tune.
Fans can catch Franklin-Le live this Saturday morning due to UFC on Fuel 6 taking place in Macau, China.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC