Carla Esparza doesn’t think the rematch between Rose Namajunas and Weili Zhang will go any differently.
At UFC 266, Namajunas and Zhang are set to rematch after Namajunas knocked out Zhang in just 78 seconds at UFC 261. However, the two will have an immediate rematch and Esparza thinks the champ will prove the first fight was no fluke in the rematch.
“I don’t think that it was a fluke,” Esparza told MMA Junkie. “I think that she was very precise and very calculated in what she did. She strategized in the moment. She’s such a smart fighter, and she picks up on things mid-fight. I think she got a read, and she got the knockout.
“I think that Rose will win again. I think she’ll win the rematch. I don’t know if it’ll be that quick, but for my sake, I hope so. I hope she gets a great finish and she comes out undamaged and that will lead to a sooner turnaround for us to fight, potentially,” Esparza continued.
Although Namajunas-Zhang 2 is a good fight, many thought Esparza would get the next title shot. She is on a five-fight winning streak and during that run, she has beaten the likes of Marina Rodriguez, Yan Xiaonan, and Michelle Waterson among others.
With that, Carla Esparza believes she will get the next title shot but she hasn’t been promised anything.
“I haven’t really gotten any word,” Esparza said. “I’ve inquired through my manager, Brian Butler, to see what’s going on, to see if I can get a guarantee that the next fight is mine, if I’m going to be sitting and waiting. I haven’t even gotten that, so it’s a little bit disheartening because I’ve worked so hard to get to this point. I think a lot of people have seen that.
“Maybe I haven’t been the biggest talker. I’ve always been quiet, very humble, and keep my head down. But at the end of the day, I’ve felt like my performances that I’ve done these seven years – coming back from going down and going back up – I think that speaks louder than any words should.”