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Cung Le signs six fight deal with UFC; debuts against Vitor Belfort at UFC 139 in San Jose

Cung Le practices his kicks at Strikeforce's open workout. Until now, Le has spent his entire pro MMA career fighting for Strikeforce. Photo by Matt de la Rosa for ProMMAnow.com

For Bay Area fight fans, it does not get much bigger than Cung Le. The former Strikeforce middleweight champion will make his UFC debut against former UFC light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort at UFC 139 on Nov. 19 at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif.

San Jose is Le’s adopted hometown and the HP Pavilion is the same venue where Le made his successful pro mixed martial arts debut for Strikeforce back in 2006, knocking out Mike Altman in the first round.

Belfort first confirmed the fight on his website over the weekend. Le then made the media rounds Monday appearing on various Internet radio programs where he confirmed he had signed a six fight deal with the UFC.

Come fight time, Le (7-1) will have been out of action for well over a year. His last bout took place June 2010 when he avenged his only career loss and dismantled brawler Scott Smith via second round TKO at “Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Werdum”.

All seven of Le’s wins have come via knockout or technical knockout. Prior to his MMA career, Le also went 17-0 as a kickboxer, finishing 12 of his opponents via (T)KO.

Since his last fight with Smith Le has been busy acting and starring in various films alongside such names as Jean-Claude Van Damme, Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu. Le said he was told the UFC will work around his acting career if need be.

Belfort (20-9) is coming off a first round knockout victory over Yoshihiro Akiyama at UFC 133 last month. It was a much needed win after suffering a brutal front kick knockout in a middleweight title bout against Anderson Silva in February.

Prior to the Silva loss, Belfort had won five straight, including back-to-back first round knockouts of Rich Franklin and Matt Lindland.

For the full UFC 139 fight card line-up as it stands, and to keep up with bout changes and additions, see ProMMAnow.com’s Upcoming Events page.

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