The card for UFC 268 has been released and looks incredible…
Every fight on this card intrigues me in one way or another, but I really want to zoom in on the co-main and main event. Two rematches for two fighters that have made countless excuses for their initial loss to their opponent.
Starting off with Zhang, who lost to Rose Namajunas by KO back at UFC 261 earlier this year. She’s done nothing but make up different excuses since the loss, instead of just accepting the fact that Rose caught her clean with a headkick. I believe her first excuse was that it was a poor stoppage, which it wasn’t. Then she went on to blame the American crowd that boo’d her, with her coach saying “she lost focus” and “at the moment she was actually not fully there.”
Last week, she gave an excuse about seeing Chris Weidman break his leg before her fight and how it made her lose focus as well, however, everyone fighting after, Rose, Usman and Masvidal had to see that as well.
Furthermore, this fight will be in America once again so if she knew that is going to hamper her performance, why wouldn’t she just wait to fight in another country?
What makes it worse for Zhang is that her coaches keep making excuses for her. As a coach, your goal after a loss is to ground your fighter and help them improve, whereas Zhang’s coaches have put her on a pedestal, and have made every excuse to why she didn’t win in April. Because of this, I don’t see Zhang improving as much as she needs to going into the rematch with Rose, which is unfortunate because Zhang has the potential to be the greatest strawweight of all time but her and her coaches mentality will not project her to the level that she needs to reach that potential.
Going onto the main event, Covington hasn’t made as many excuses as Zhang for his loss against Usman at UFC 245 however, he blamed Mark Goddard for a poor stoppage and poor officiating during the entire fight, which to a degree, I agree with. That fight wasn’t one of Goddard’s best performances, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that he got dropped and probably would’ve lost the fight 48-47 even if he did make it to the end of the fight, because Usman was 100% winning the final round.
Just like Zhang, I don’t know how much Colby will improve going into this fight, because we’ve seen Usman move on and become deadly on the feet under Trevor Wittman, (who has 3 of his fighters headlining this card, very impressive) his biggest weakness and all we’ve heard from Colby is excuses and him ranting on. Yet, even though Colby comes with the loud mouth, he is a hard worker and in general, he backs up his talk with action. I’m not sure if he can do that against this vastly improved Usman, but we’ll have to wait until November to see.