One of the UFC’s most exciting welterweights at the moment, Elizeu Zaleski, also has one of the division’s longest winning streaks. Seven straight has tied him with number one contender Colby Covington and puts them only one behind Leon Edwards, with eight, and the champion, Kamaru Usman, who has 10. However, ‘Capoeira’ does not seem to be getting the same treatment as Covington or ‘Rocky’.
Although his highlight reel is full of flashy finishes, Zaleski occupies only the 14th spot in the UFC rankings and will take on an unranked, dangerous knockout artist in Li Jingliang at UFC China. In an interview with Combate, Elizeu says he won’t change his personality in order to promote his fights and is willing to climb the rankings by just being himself.
“I think that this whole selling yourself thing is about how you use your words. Today, it’s a business, everyone looks at the more lucrative side of it, but I try to keep the more philosophical point of view in martial arts. My work is done in the Octagon, I want to use promotable words to make families want to watch me, not to make them angry at me.”
“I always call somebody out after my fights. When I talk to a reporter, I do it, too, but it’s never delivered.” Elizeu continued. “I want to do what I came here to do, which is to fight. They want me to talk trash about some guy? About a guy’s family? It’s a matter of opinion. What the fans want. Whoever admires martial arts and take them seriously supports me and tells me I’m on the right path.”
In his last outings, Elizeu Zaleski (21-5) defeated the likes of Sean Strickland, Luigi Vendramini and most recently, in March, Curtis Millender, among others. His last and sole Octagon loss happened in his debut, when he dropped a split decision to Nicolas Dalby in May 2015.
Now, Elizeu Zaleski is expected to take on Li Jingliang at UFC Fight Night 157’s co-main eveent, on August 31, in Shenzhen, China. The card is expected to be headlined by a female strawweight title fight between the champion, Jessica Andrade, and challenger Weili Zhang.