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Chris Leben to face replacement Dakota Cochrane at BKFC 6

Chris Leben
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Dakota Cochrane is stepping in for Brennan Ward against a UFC veteran again.

Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship officials announced Wednesday that Cochrane will step in on short notice for Brennan Ward to fight former UFC middleweight standout Chris Leben at BKFC 6 on June 22 in Tampa, Florida.

In a strange coincidence, this is the second time that Cochrane has been pegged as a replacement in similar circumstances. Last November at a World Bare Knuckle Fighting Federation event, he replaced Ward against former UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks. Cochrane went on to defeat Hendricks by second-round TKO.

The reason for Ward’s withdrawal was not disclosed.

Leben, 38, is 2-0 in the world of professional bareknuckle boxing. He was also successful at last November’s WBKF show, defeating fellow UFC veteran Phil Baroni by first-round TKO. He then made his BKFC debut at an April 6 show in Biloxi, Mississippi, where he needed just 25 seconds to KO Justin Baesman.

BKFC 6 will be headlined by a grudge match between former two-division boxing champion Paulie Malignaggi and former UFC fighter Artem Lobov. The event will be available to watch on pay-per-view.

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