After dominant title defense at UFC 292, what’s next for Zhang Weili?

Jun 12, 2022; Singapore, SIN; Zhang Weili (red gloves) reacts after the fight against Joanna Jedrzejczyk (blue gloves) during UFC 275 at Singapore Indoor Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Miller-USA TODAY Sports

This past Saturday in the co-main event of UFC 292, the strawweight title was on the line. Zhang Weili (24-3) was looking to kickoff her second title reign with a big win as she took on a powerful top contender in Brazil’s Amanda Lemos (13-3-1).

Weili was a big betting favorite entering Saturday, but it was recognized that Lemos had the power to make things interesting in this one. In the first round, Weili wasted no time in getting the fight to the mat. That is where she was supposed to have a big advantage and she did throughout the night.

Now, Lemos did almost lock in a d’arce choke in the first round. The choke was tight, but Weili powered through. After surviving that attempt, it was pretty much one-way traffic. Lemos did keep the fight standing for a good part of the fourth round and did land some pretty big shots.

However, Weili dropped her and completely dominated the fifth round. In the end, it was a completely dominant performance and Zhang Weili left with her title still wrapped around her waist at UFC 292.

What’s next after UFC 292?

For Zhang Weili, it’s going to be interesting to see what’s next for her in terms of a challenger. There are two deserving top contenders, but it’ll ultimately come down to where the fight takes place in my opinion. Weili will either defend against Yan Xiaonan or Tatiana Suarez next.

Dana White hinted at the post-fight press conference that the UFC would love to do another fight in China and have Weili headline. If they do, there’s no doubt that the fight would be against Xiaonan. The promotion couldn’t pass up the opportunity to have two Chinese fighters headlining a China card for a UFC title.

However, if the fight takes place anywhere else, I think Suarez is the more compelling challenger with a bigger following. So, it’ll ultimately come down to where the fight takes place.