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UFC 292 results: Zhang Weili sets striking record to defend strawweight title in dominant win over Amanda Lemos

UFC 292: Zhang v Lemos Photo by Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Zhang Weili dished out a savage beating over five rounds to defend her strawweight title in a unanimous decision win over Amanda Lemos in the UFC 292 main event.

Not only did Zhang get the win but she actually set a record for the biggest striking differential in women’s UFC history after outlanding Lemos 288 to 21 during the five round fight. It was a flawless showing from Zhang as she retained the belt in her second reign as UFC champion.

“Boston, I feel here is my home,” Zhang said to a raucous crowd backing her. “I feel the energy you gave me. Thank you everybody, I’m so happy. I’m training everyday so hard for an easy fight. I’m not surprised because I have a great team.”

It was one-way traffic for Zhang almost as soon as the fight got started with Lemos stuck playing defense in almost every single exchange. An early kick from Lemos started her downfall after Zhang quickly snatched leg and brought the fight down to the canvas in a hurry.

From there, Zhang passed to side control as she started dropping her shoulder down onto Lemos’ chin and then setting up a series of punishing punches in succession.

Out of nowhere, Lemos tried to latch onto a guillotine choke from the bottom but Zhang stayed patient to eventually slip free before returning to her vicious ground and pound attack. For a few moments it appeared Zhang might pound out a finish but Lemos survive to see a second round.

On the feet, Lemos was happy to trade punches with the champion and that’s where she connected with her first real damaging shot in the fight. In return, Zhang brought the fight back to the ground where she was dishing out the punishment and really controlling Lemos in the grappling exchanges.

Zhang was relentless with Lemos stuck underneath her as she continuously threw short, punishing punches and elbows and then transitioning to submission attempts whenever there was a momentary opening. Even when Lemos battled back to her feet, Zhang was there to meet her with a series of stiff elbows on the inside while showing no fear of reprisal.

It wasn’t until the fourth round when Lemos finally started coming alive with her striking arsenal as Zhang starting to slow down, which prevented her from really using her wrestling again. That said, Lemos still wasn’t doing enough to really back Zhang off and time was running out on any potential comeback.

While Zhang was cruising to victory, she was still looking for the finish and that’s when she hammered Lemos with a punch that sent her crashing to the ground. Zhang followed her to the canvas where she began unleashing a barrage of shots but Lemos just kept finding a way to hold on and survive.

Ultimately that’s all Lemos could really do over five rounds with Zhang putting on a suffocating display to defend her title in impressive fashion.

The win for Zhang clears out another contender but there are still plenty of obstacles left in her path with potential challengers like Yan Xiaonan and Tatiana Suarez waiting in the wings.

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