Zak Cummings looks to get back on the winning track this Saturday when he faces Alessio Di Chirico in a middleweight contest at UFC Vegas 8. The 36-year-old will be fighting on the same event as teammate Anthony Smith, and hopes the results are similar to the last time the pair competed on the same card.
“We fought on the same card once before in Kansas City, he fought Andrew Sanchez and we both had good victories,” Cummings told Cageside Press. “I guess there’s some good ‘juju’ with us fighting on the same night. But more than anything it’s nice that in camp we’re trying to peak at the same moment. Just kind of push each other the whole time instead of like, one giving away a little bit to the other of helping them get prepared. It’s been a great training camp so far.”
Cummings (23-7) hasn’t competed since a September 2019 decision loss to Omari Akhmedov at UFC 242. The Kansas City native has gone 2-1 since moving back up to the middleweight division in late 2018.
Di Chirico (12-4) heads into this match-up off back-to-back losses and like Cummings hasn’t competed since September of last year. After going undefeated prior to signing with the UFC in 2016, Di Chirico has gone 3-3 in the Octagon.
While Cummings knows Di Chirico’s durability in the cage, the Factory X product believes he’ll be the one to finish the fight should the match-up not hit the judges scorecards.
“Alessio’s good, he’s hard to finish,” Cummings said. “I feel like I have all the finishing factors between us. I don’t see him knocking me out, I definitely don’t see him submitting me. I’ve got the ability to do both. I think it’s gonna be a fun, exciting fight. He’s definitely willing to sit there and throw some heat. Which I will as well. But I see, if there’s gonna be a finish in this fight, it’s going be with me finishing him. But besides that, I could see a ‘Fight of the Night’ type of performance.”
UFC Vegas 8 takes place this Saturday, August 29 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Former light heavyweight title challenger Anthony Smith faces Aleksandar Rakic in the main event.