Out of all of the fighters who went via the musical chair switch-up at UFC 279, nobody received hosed worse than Li Jingliang.
“The Leech” went from preventing Tony Ferguson within the co-main occasion to preventing Daniel Rodriguez additional down the cardboard. Not solely was it an enormous step down in status, it was an enormous step up in problem. Whereas “El Cucuy” was a light-weight shifting as much as welterweight for the primary time, Daniel Rodriguez is an enormous welterweight who wanted a 180 pound catchweight to compete.
Certain, you could possibly argue Kevin Holland received an excellent crappier draw, going from preventing Rodriguez to Khamzat Chimaev. However “Large Mouth” additionally made sure he was getting paid for the swap up, one thing we’re sadly undecided is the case for Jingliang. So as to add insult to damage, Jingliang additionally misplaced his struggle with “D-Rod” by way of break up choice. Whereas we wouldn’t go thus far to name it a theft, it actually sits on the very giant pile of questionable Nevada judging outcomes.
Not one of the chaos within the lead as much as UFC 279 visibly bothered Li Jingliang an excessive amount of. He accepted the opponent change with out blinking. He didn’t complain after he misplaced the prospect to point out off his snazzy new go well with on the pre-event press convention. And he’s being equally stoic in regards to the defeat to Daniel Rodriguez in a brand new Instagram publish.
“Large due to everybody who helps me,” Jingliang wrote. “I felt numerous love from you this week. You guys are who I’m preventing for. I struggle for my folks, my household and my dream. I’ll preserve strolling on the trail which I select. Won’t ever cease and take what belongs to me again. Congrats Daniel Rodriguez, my pal.”
That’s a particularly stylish assertion from somebody who has a complete lot of causes to stroll away from UFC 279 feeling sore about issues.
If there’s one optimistic, it’s that the UFC appears to be contemplating this struggle a win for him. UFC president Dana White stated as a lot through the post-fight press convention.
“I assumed Li gained the struggle,” White stated, earlier than agreeing Jingliang received the brief finish of the stick. “He did. They’re proper, you’re proper, the judges had been improper in my view. It wasn’t even like I used to be like ‘Wow, that would have gone both manner. I used to be shocked once they stated break up choice.”
One factor “The Leech” walks away from UFC 279 with is much more followers. Right here’s hoping the UFC turns him round quick, and provides him a excessive profile struggle and no final minute shenanigans to make up for this clusterf—okay of per week.