Nearly nine years after his first featherweight title shot — a technical knockout loss to Jose Aldo at UFC 163 — longtime 145-pound contender Chan Sung Jung will finally get a second crack at the division crown when he collides with Alex Volkanovski at UFC 273.
Unless something crazy happens and this guy steps in.
The opportunity brought Jung over to Arizona’s Fight Ready gym where “The Korean Zombie” has been training alongside former two-division champion Henry Cejudo, who tried (and failed) to get his own shot at the 145-pound title.
“Henry really surprised him a lot, because we’ve seen him a lot in camp and stuff like that, but Zombie got the title shot and he’s been helping out so much,” coach Eddie Cha told The MMA Hour. “He’s been at every practice, every team meeting that we have for Zombie. He’s actually doing sparring rounds, playing around with him, so he’s super grateful. He didn’t realize he was so intelligent, fight-IQ-wise and everything else. Like when you see him on TV, he’s cringey and all that, but off camera he’s telling [Jung] what to do, he’s wrestling, coaching him as he play spars and stuff like that. So he’s a huge part of this camp.”
Volkanovski (23-1) was originally scheduled to face former champion Max Holloway right up until “Blessed” went down with injury. That’s when the 17-6 Jung — fresh off his decision victory over the rough-and-tumble Dan Ige — got the call to fill in.
Much to the chagrin of whiny little princesses.
In the UFC 273 co-main event, bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling (20-3) will attempt to unify the 135-pound titles opposite interim straphanger Petr Yan (16-2). Elsewhere on the card, Mackenzie Dern returns against strawweight veteran Tecia Torres.
To see who else is fighting at UFC 273 on April 9 in Jacksonville click here.