Li “The Leech” Jingliang, 31, of Beijing, China earned his ninth victory in the Ultimate Fighting Championship on August 31, 2019 by knocking out Elizeu “Capoiera” Zaleski dos Santos, 32, of Curitiba, Parana, Brazil at “UFC Fight Night 157” at the Shenzhen Universiade Sports Centre Arena in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China. During the event, the Chinese mixed martial artist talked about the Hong Kong-based MMA promotion Legend Fighting Championship, where he used to compete.
“What I say is that Legend FC is legendary,” Li stated. “It was important for me as it led me to UFC. It helped so many fighters. We were a lot younger then and still learning.”
Born in Tacheng, Xinjiang, China on March 20, 1988, Li has been competing professionally since 2007. From 2010 to 2013, he won five out of seven fights in Legend FC.
From Legend FC, Li moved to the UFC. He won nine out of 12 fights in the UFC including his recent knockout victory over dos Santos at “UFC Fight Night 157.”
“Also it was not like it is today, where there are fans everywhere,” Li pointed out. “With Legend, you sometimes felt that the fans were learning as much about MMA as we were. It was like we were all starting together.”
In the UFC, Li has picked up four Fight of the Night bonuses along the way. He is now riding a three-bout winning streak.
In Legend FC, Li fought on cards in the likes of Hong Kong, Macau and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Almost a decade on from his last fight with the organisation and his career is surging.
On September 14, 2019, Li and former UFC fighter Zhang Tiequan, 41, of Inner Mongolia, China were among the special guests at “Legend FC 13“ at the MGM Theater in Taipa, Ilhas, Macau, China. Li entered the cage to help award the main event event winner Yuan Chunbo of Guangzhou, China.
Yuan fought Li Lianjie of Beijing in an MMA match in the 66kg division. After three five-minute rounds, the referee raised the hand of Yuan, who was declared the winner via unanimous decision.
Watch all the “Legend FC 13” bouts here: