Tony Ferguson returns to the cage relatively quickly after a heavy knockout defeat by Michael Chandler. Four months later, "El Cucuy" will appear at the UFC 279 event, and his opponent will be Li Jingliang. It is interesting that Ferguson returns to the cage before Michael Chandler, who knocked him out, and not only that, but Ferguson also decided to move to a higher category.
"El Cucuy" is looking for the first victory since the sixth month of 2019 and an end to the losing streak. He lost to Ferguson in the last four appearances, and we will see how he will finish the experiment with moving to a higher category on September 10 (the ninth month).
Li Jingliang is a ranked welterweight and is currently ranked 14th in the welterweight rankings. If Ferguson beats him, he will probably jump into the top 15, but Chael Sonnen doesn't see the point of this match.
“I don’t like it,” Sonnen said.
“You want to talk about Charles Oliveira and you want to talk about what a big star he is — they say that him versus [Justin] Gaethje was the biggest pay-per-view of the year, not to mention this year had the heavyweight fight between the [interim] champion and the undisputed [champion], and you’re still telling me that Oliveira-Gaethje was No.
1? Oliveira doesn’t exist, that belt doesn’t exist and the story doesn’t exist, if Tony Ferguson — who was up in the loft — had not dropped the ladder down so that Oliveira could climb up it.
“Now we’re going to bring Ferguson back, great story, he’s hanging in there, he’s traded camps, he’s doing things different, and you’re giving him — I don’t know of ‘Leech’ [Jingliang].
I don’t know if that’s his nickname or that’s his name, and I’m not trying to be a dick. I assume you call a guy a leech, like he claims to be — I haven’t the foggiest idea who we’ve got opposite Tony Ferguson or how we’re supposed to pretend that that matters”.
In a way, it is not difficult to agree with him in this case. There were many more logical and interesting pairings for Ferguson, in the lightweight division and even in the welterweight division. But who knows what is hidden behind the contracting of this fight. Perhaps Ferguson simply wanted to return as soon as possible, and Li Jingliang was the best available opponent.
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