In attempt to stop the fifth title defense of the featherweight king, “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung will challenge the champion, Jose Aldo, for the 145-pound crown this Saturday, August 3 at UFC 163 in Brazil. Currently ranked at #5 in the featherweight bracket, Jung has been out of action for well over a year after a shoulder injury kept him sidelined.
The UFC 163 headliner was actually supposed to be a mini-super fight between Aldo and Anthony Pettis. That was until a knee injury forced Pettis from the bout and Jung filled in. Though the match up isn’t as compelling as the bout that was initially announced, it still has the potential to be the champ’s most thrilling contest he’s had inside the Octagon yet.
Jung (13-3) is well-known for imposing his will upon every opponent from bell-to-bell. With a kickboxing background (21-6) to go with his slick submissions, the Korean Zombie’s always looking to lay some leather on his adversary.
In a kickboxing bout, he landed an illegal spinning backfist and the KO was deemed a disqualification.
When Jung made his debut in World Extreme Cagefighting, it didn’t take long for him to build a reputation in the U.S., as he traded punches with Leonard Garcia for three entire rounds, providing fight fans with one of the most epic battles to take place in the WEC days. Though Jung was on the receiving end of a controversial split decision loss, it’s difficult to consider such an effort a “loss”, in my opinion.
A second fight in the WEC against George Roop, who is now red hot in the UFC, didn’t go so well for The Korean Zombie. Roop would use his length and superior movement to tag Jung at will up until he scored a sweet inside head kick that clipped the Korean right on the button and shut the lights out. This was the only match in the past three years where the Zombie found himself the favorite going into the fight.
The do-or-die slugger would redeem himself in his UFC debut, when the Zombie stepped in for an injured Nam Phan to take on Garcia in a rematch of their 2010 fight of the year. Now Jung approached this fight with a more technical game plan, leading with precise combinations instead of just going punch-for-punch with Garcia. As Garcia was trying to escape back mount, Jung adjusted position so he only had a single hook in on Garcia, and before he could realize what type of submission hold was being put on him, it was way too late. Jung secured a twister submission and erased any bad memory he had from his past two fights.
His second UFC appearance would result in an ending that was just as shocking as his debut, when the Zombie took on the former title challenger, Mark Hominick, not many fans were sure what to expect out of Jung, and the oddsmakers once again had him as the underdog. Everyone knew what Hominick could do having just took Jose Aldo five-rounds at UFC 129, but an overaggressive Hominick played right into the earl trap of Jung, as he lured the Canadian in the pocket and countered an extended left hook with a straight right hand and some follow-up shots that sealed the deal. He knocked Hominick out in his home country while tying the record for the fastest knockout in the UFC.
The Korean Zombie still got no love going into his next fight with the rising contender Dustin Poirier. It was an all out brawl with the Zombie taking over later in the fight. A flying knee to Poirier while his back was on the fence lead to a takedown attempt that was stuffed by Jung. A D’arce choke ended Poirier’s title hopes and Jung recorded his third-straight win in the Octagon while also claiming his second fight of the year in five fights.
Watch the UFC 163 pay-per-view that’s going down this Saturday to witness the return of the Zombie.