Sean Woodson expects to finish Youssef Zalal to “prove I belong” in the UFC: “I have a chip on my shoulder”

Sean Woodson
Image Credit: UFC

Sean Woodson is looking to remind UFC fans that he’s a problem in the featherweight division.

Woodson came into the UFC at 6-0 after winning a flying knee KO over Terrance McKinney on the Contender Series. In his debut, he earned a decision win over Kyle Bochniak. In his second appearance, he took on short-notice replacement Julian Erosa. Early on, he had success but in the third round he lost by submission for his first career loss. Although it was disappointing, he says it was a good learning experience.

“Yeah, a lot of people take their first career loss in different ways. Some guys after taking a loss are never the same,” Woodson said to “The moment I got back into my locker room I called my manager and said get me back in there ASAP, I need to get this bad taste out of my mouth. He set me up in a fight in November which was like three or four months after that. Unfortunately, I got hurt and had to pull out due to a rib injury. Since then I’ve healed up and got into training camp. It’s been a long time since I’ve fought.”

When Woodson steps back into the Octagon at UFC Vegas 28 against Youssef Zalal, it will nearly be a full year since his last fight. The layoff is disappointing for Woodson but he got a full camp for the fight and he knows that will help him quite a bit.

“I was super fortunate to get a full camp for this fight. I had 12 weeks but maybe in a perfect world, I return a bit sooner,” Woodson said. “As for the opponent, Youssef Zalal isn’t someone I asked for or anything like that, it’s just who the UFC offered me. I’m familiar with him as well. I went and trained at his gym a while ago and I know it will be a tough fight but an exciting matchup.”

Sean Woodson
Image Credit: UFC

In the fight, Sean Woodson is confident he will be able to walk down Zalal and as he tries to go for a takedown will meet him with a punch or knee. He’s confident he will be able to finish the Factory X fighter and get back into the win column in a big way.

“This fight will be more of me pushing forward and walking him down. I know he will try and take me down because of how my last fight went. But, he has to go through my hands and knees if he tries to take me down,” Woodson said. “I really feel like I will get the stoppage. He’s super durable, but I’ve improved so much in the last year and both our backs are against the wall where maybe the loser gets cut. I feel like that will bring the best out of both of us.”

If Woodson gets his hand raised, he says the goal is to fight again soon. He just wants to keep the momentum going and prove he’s a problem at featherweight.

“I’m coming in here to prove a point and prove I belong. I’m coming to make a statement, and I’m entering this fight with a chip on my shoulder,” Woodson concluded.

Who do you think will win, Sean Woodson or Youssef Zalal?

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