Korean Zombie Was Surprised to Get UFC 163 Title Shot, but Happy He Did

July 31, 2013
Comments off

Chan Sung Jung Korean Zombie WEC 51When it was announced that Anthony Pettis was injured and forced out of the UFC 163 featherweight title fight with champion Jose Aldo, some were surprised when “The Korean Zombie,” Chan-Sung Jung, was named as Pettis’ replacement.

In fact, Jung was one of them.

“At first, I was really in disbelief about it, and so until Dana White actually announced that I was going to be in the fight, I actually didn’t really even believe it, but it was true. But the excitement lasted quite a while,” said Jung on a recent media conference call promoting the event.

Jung was originally scheduled to face Ricardo Lamas at UFC 162, but was pulled from the fight to face Aldo.  Lamas is ranked higher than Jung and many felt Lamas should have been Pettis’ replacement.  Jung doesn’t disagree, but believes more than just rankings were factored into the decision.

“To be honest with you, I thought that Lamas would have been the first choice as well. But I’m happy to be have been chosen,” he said.  “I think maybe what made the difference was the stylistic differences and I think that this fight is guaranteed to be an exciting fight. And that’s probably one of the big reasons why they chose me to go over Lamas.”

The stylistic match-up may have well played into the decision to put Jung in against Aldo, but marketing could also have been a factor.

Jung is from South Korea and mixed martial arts is a growing sport there.

“In particular, in MMA circles, it’s just probably one of the biggest things that’s happened in Korea and MMA. Overall, there’s been quite a bit of response from the mass media as well. And the general public even seems to be very interested, not only in the fights, but more and more interested in MMA as well,” said the 26-year-old fighter.

Jung last competed on May 15, 2012, defeating Dustin Poirier by submission.  That amount of time off can be detrimental to a fighter, but Jung feels it was beneficial.

“They gave me a lot of time to prepare mentally and physically, to get my injuries all healed up. And so I think the time off actually helped benefit me.”

Jung and Aldo square off in the UFC 163 main event on Saturday night at the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro.

Be sure to Like MMAWeekly.com on Facebook and Follow @MMAWeeklycom on Twitter.

  • Manuel Lopez

    I like KZ but he’s gonna get ktfo!

  • Troll Killer

    Happy Jung got the title shot. I hope he comes through, especially b/c I don’t think Pettis is going to try to move back down to 145.

    I think Pettis v Aldo would’ve been even more exciting than Anderson vs. GSP / Jones. Pettis v. Aldo would actually be likely a standup war while GSP & Jones would just try to grapple w/ Anderson (not to mention w/ Anderson’s last fight some luster has been lost surrounding Anderson at all).

  • KZ with an upset!

    • sprackles

      ALL DAY

    • Ed Soares

      if Aldo takes him lightly… but I’m gonna guess that Weidman’s upset victory over Anderson is going to wake up Aldo a bit and make sure he doesn’t underestimate anyone.

  • sprackles

    KZ destroys Aldo. Don’t bother debating with me because I know I can’t back it up on paper…but guess what? 99.99% of MMA happens inside the ring…and paper is for poopy buttholes.
    KZ with an epic upset.

  • timthebim

    Aldo murders the zombie!