Add Chan Sung Jung to the list of fighters looking to replace the injured Max Holloway at UFC 272 this coming March. The only difference between “Korean Zombie” and the rest of the featherweights looking to score an early 2022 title shot is the fact that current champion, Alexander Volkanovski, has accepted his offer.
Following Friday’s news of Holloway withdrawing from his trilogy bout with Volkanovski a slew of 145-pound contenders threw their hat into the cage for a chance to square off with the champ. Guys like Henry Cejudo, Yair Rodriguez, Josh Emmett, and Giga Chikadze made their pleads for the vacant spot left by “Blessed.” A case could be made for each contender, but none seemed to spark Volkanovski’s interest more than Korean Zombie.
In a statement made to MMA Junkie, Jung’s manager, Jason House, confirmed that the featherweight veteran is eager to step in on short notice and fight Volkanovski at UFC 272. The callout wasn’t as aggressive as some of the others, but the request was still made.
“KZ is more than willing to step in and fight for the title at UFC 272,” House said. “Looking at the rankings, he is the next highest-ranked fighter coming off a win and this is a fight many have talked about for quite a while now. Given the opportunity, he will show that he’s the best in the world.”
Volkanovski — who seemed more than ready to field all offers following Holloway’s fallout — quickly responded to Korean Zombie’s request with a simple “Let’s do this!” message on Twitter.
@KoreanZombieMMA Let’s do this!! #UFC272— Alex Volkanovski (@alexvolkanovski) January 7, 2022
According to MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani, Korean Zombie is a sizeable favorite to slip into Holloway’s spot and fight Volkanovski at UFC 272.
Chan Sung Jung is currently the frontrunner, by a margin, to replace Holloway versus Alex Volkanovski, per sources.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) January 7, 2022
“Chan Sung Jung is currently the frontrunner, by a margin, to replace Holloway versus Alex Volkanovski, per sources.”
Jung, who lost his only UFC title shot to Jose Aldo back in 2013, is one of the more popular fighters on the roster today. Since his return from mandatory military service the knockout artist has racked off a 4-2 record in the featherweight division. His only losses came against Brian Ortega in a main event and a last-second Hail Mary knockout defeat to Rodriguez back in 2018. Korean Zombie is coming off a masterful performance against Dan Ige in June of last year and seems like the logical choice to fill in for Holloway given his No. 4 ranking.
What do you think, fight fans? Does a Volkanovski vs. Korean Zombie title fight make the most sense?