Nearly two years ago, top featherweight contender Brian Ortega experienced his first professional loss at the hands of Max Holloway. Ortega endured a lengthy beating that led to a UFC doctor calling a stop to the action entering round five.
On Saturday, Ortega bounced back big time against “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung. Primarily known for his grappling prowess, “T-City” showed how much he’d improved on his striking game.
Given his massive development as a stand-up fighter, Ortega is expecting a totally different outcome in a potential rematch with Holloway.
“I said this in the beginning, in the very, very beginning when the fight was first set up, we will meet again,” Ortega said of Holloway during the post-fight scrum. “He’s gonna stay at the top. He’s not just a guy that’s gonna drop right off the bat and just kinda spiral down his career. I’m not a guy that’s just gonna fall off like that. Clearly, tonight I showed the world that that’s not me.
“He’s gonna stay on top, I’m gonna be at the top, Volkanovski’s gonna be at the top. And believe me, we’re gonna have some rounds with all of us. We’re gonna keep you guys entertained.
“It would just look different,” he added. “I’m not here to promote anything or to say this and that. I just know I’m a better fighter than I was when I fought him, and it would go a lot different.”
You can say it was Brian Ortega 2.0 who showed up on Saturday night. But according to the man himself, there are still a few more aces up his sleeve.
I love when we get these type of vids pic.twitter.com/V19wSPI78a— Connoisseur of Combat (@ConOfCombat) October 19, 2020
“There’s a lot more, man. There’s a lot more that I have been learning but I just don’t have the confidence to use yet,” he said. “Because it’s like, ‘Well I can land it on the pads, but can I land it on a real fight?’ I’m barely landing it when I spar.
“So there’s all these new tricks that I’m still learning right now, that I’m still kinda sh-tty at it, to be honest.”
Ortega is now next in line to face reigning champion Alexander Volkanovski, as confirmed by UFC president Dana White in a pre-fight interview.