Weekend Warrior: UFC, ‘Zombie’ Return to South Korea
“The Korean Zombie” finally has some home cooking in his immediate future. Chan Sung Jung will compete on native soil for the first time in more than a decade when he meets former 155-pound champion Frankie Edgar in a high-stakes featherweight battle atop UFC Fight Night 165 on Saturday at Sajik Arena in Busan, South Korea.
Cover Photo: Josh Hedges / Contributor (Getty Images)
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Chan Sung Jung punches Yair Rodriguez. Photo: Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC (Getty Images)
Long established as one of the sport’s most exciting fighters, Jung has rattled off five wins across his past seven bouts. The 32-year-old World Extreme Cagefighting veteran last appeared at UFC Fight Night 154 on June 22, when he needed less than a minute—58 seconds to be exact—to cut down Renato Carneiro with punches. Jung, who saw his career interrupted by mandatory military service and a string of injuries, has delivered 13 of his 15 professional victories by knockout, technical knockout or submission.
A short-notice fill-in for the injured Brian Ortega, Edgar, 38, finds himself on the backside of a remarkable career. The Toms River, New Jersey, native has not competed since he failed to capture the undisputed featherweight crown in a unanimous decision loss to Max Holloway at UFC 240 in July. Edgar held the lightweight championship for more than 600 days, from April 10, 2010, to Feb. 26, 2012, and has spent more time inside the Octagon (7:12:33) than any other fighter in Ultimate Fighting Championship history.
Frankie Edgar punches Brian Ortega. Photo: Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC (Getty Images)
UFC Fight Night “Edgar vs. Korean Zombie”—which streams live to ESPN+ at 5 a.m. ET/2 a.m. PT—will also feature a featherweight scrap matching Doo Ho Choi with Charles Jourdain, a middleweight tilt pitting Jun Yong Park against Marc-Andre Barriault, a bantamweight affair slotting Kyung Ho Kang opposite Pingyuan Liu and a pair of light heavyweight confrontations, as Volkan Oezdemir faces Aleksandar Rakic and Da Un Jung locks horns with Mike Rodriguez. ESPN will provide coverage of the entire seven-fight undercard at 2 a.m. ET/11 p.m. PT.
Meanwhile, Bellator MMA knocks off the dust from a one-month layoff with a doubleheader in Honolulu. Former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett on Friday will make his promotional debut in a headlining assignment against Ronny Markes at Bellator 235, which airs live on Paramount Network at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT. Some 24 hours later, Ilima-Lei Macfarlane will defend her women’s strawweight title against Kate Jackson in the main event of Bellator 236, which streams live to Dazn at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.