Weili Zhang has nothing but respect for Rose Namajunas. That said, she’s still targeting the champion.
Namajunas became a two-time women’s strawweight champion after an emphatic head kick knockout of Zhang at UFC 261 back in April.
Zhang — who was already receiving plenty of boos from the Florida crowd prior to the contest starting — received flak soon after for protesting the referee’s stoppage as she felt the fight could have gone on longer.
However, it was certainly the right stoppage as Zhang went out cold for a second and was in no position to defend herself. But because of her protests, “Magnum” felt like she was being cyber-bullied by critics in the aftermath.
And she couldn’t even turn it all off either.
“Everyone commented on this,” Zhang told My Bronze Age (via MMA Mania). “Haters, supporters, giving me all kinds of comments. I felt like I was being cyber-bullied at the time.
“I told [my coach] that I want to have an old phone, I don’t want to look at the Internet and all the comments anymore. He said you can’t, you can’t live in your own vacuum, you need to accept this.”
Zhang: Namajunas Still My Target
While it was a forgettable night for the Chinese star, she holds no grudges towards Namajunas. In fact, she even went as far as likening her to a God.
But “Thug” still remains her target.
“You must have no feelings when you see the knockout again,” Zhang added. “She’s the champion now. You must admire her. You must respect her as a god. You can’t think, ‘she got the belt because of my accidental mistake.’ Rose is at the top and I should give all due respect.
“She’s the champ, just like a god. She’s the one in billions. I should respect her. But she’s still my target.”
While not many would complain if Zhang got a rematch, it looks like former champion Carla Esparza — who has won five in a row and notably defeated Namajunas in the past — will get the next crack.