Tomorrow night in the co-main event of UFC 292, the strawweight title is on the line. The champion Zhang Weili (23-3) is back for her first title defense of her second title reign as she takes on surging top contender Amanda Lemos (13-2-1).
As mentioned, Weili is beginning her second reign on top of the strawweight division. The last time we saw her was back in November at UFC 281 when she took on Carla Esparza. On the heels of her second win over Joanna Jedrzejczyk, Weili got a crack at Esparza. Despite being the challenger, Weili was the huge favorite and she looked the part by submitting Esparza to regain the title.
Now, she gets to defend her title against Amanda Lemos. Lemos lost her UFC debut, but then she went on a five-fight winning streak which earned her a main event against Jessica Andrade. Lemos lost that fight, but bounced back strong with back-to-back finishes over Michelle Waterson-Gomez and Marina Rodriguez. Now, she gets a shot at undisputed gold.
UFC 292 Prediction
Amanda Lemos possesses more danger than just about anyone in the strawweight division when it comes to punching power and her boxing. At range, she’s a nightmare to deal with. However, there are some question marks about how well she will hold up in tomorrow night’s title fight.
We know that Weili can go hard for five rounds. We also know that Weili has a very well-rounded game and I expect her to utilize her grappling advantage tomorrow night. Can Lemos hold off Weili and keep this at boxing range? If she can, she definitely has the power to make things interesting.
However, I just don’t see her winning this fight at UFC 292. I just think that Weili will be too much and her ability to mix in her takedowns with her combinations will frustrate Lemos. I also see the cardio playing a big factor ultimately leading to a submission for Weili in the fourth round.
Prediction: Zhang Weili by Submission – Round 4