Israel Adesanya is quickly becoming one of the most popular fighters on the UFC roster today. But with added exposure and unforgettable results inside of the Octagon, the UFC middleweight champion is putting a big target on his back.
While most fighters would be overwhelmed by the extra attention “Last Stylebender” seems to enjoy all of it. From his public spat with Jon Jones to his ongoing rivalry with Paulo Costa, Adesanya has a lot of enemies in the game right now.
Surprisingly, Adesanya has also added former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman to the list. The two had a quick back-and-forth exchange on social media last weekend that Adesanya labeled “weird.” It was interesting to watch.
“It was a bit weird for me, but I already have him figured out,” Adesanya told MMA Junkie. “I have it figured out right down to how I’m going to take him out. Let him bring his double leg, let him bring his single leg, let him try and force me to the fence. He’s not going to strike with me. Come strike with me – one thing that he has going good for him is, one thing he said before he knocked out Anderson Silva, at the weigh-ins, he looked at him dead in the eyes and said, ‘I’m not scared of you. I’m not scared of you.’ He said that over and over to him; I remember that.”
While Adesanya vs. Weidman is an interesting matchup to think about at 185 pounds, especially given Weidman’s grappling acumen, it’s not a fight that fans should count on right away. Adesanya is too busy plotting his superfight with Jones and a potential clash with the winner of Robert Whittaker vs. Jared Cannonier, while Weidman tries to reestablish himself in middleweight division.
After all, Weidman just snapped a two-fight losing streak with a unanimous decision win over Omari Akhmedov this past August. It was Weidman’s first win at 185 pounds since choking out Kelvin Gastelum back in 2017.
“I told him, ‘I look forward to fighting you one day,’ because I actually thought he would be at the top for a while, but he unfortunately hasn’t been doing well lately,” Adesanya said. “Not that he can’t come back. Look at Jan Blachowicz; he came back and now he’s the champion. But yeah, I’m just saying, I’ve studied these mother(expletives), they think this is a (expletive) game.
“Weidman is already done. That fight will end in the first round if it happens, but you’ve got to get some wins first, bro. A few wins first, yeah.”
Adesanya, who is 8-0 in UFC competition, is coming off a spectacular performance opposite Costa at UFC 253. “Last Stylebender” finished the Brazilian knockout artist via second-round TKO and barely got touched. He also did it in front of over 700,000 PPV watchers.
What say you, Maniacs? Would Adesanya melt Weidman in the first round?
Let’s hear it!