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Robert Whittaker: ‘I think I will test the waters at 205 pounds one day,’ wants Israel Adesanya trilogy first

UFC 275 Weigh-in Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Robert Whittaker sees a swim in the Light Heavyweight waters awaiting him ... just not until he gets his hands on Israel Adesanya a third time.

In the Middleweight division, Adesanya has been the only man able to best Whittaker in his 13 fights at the weight class. Following a sensational performance in their initial Oct. 2019 encounter (watch highlights), Adesanya was tested more thoroughly by Whittaker in their rematch earlier this year (Feb. 2022). Ultimately, the result was the same as Adesanya once again had his hand raised, this time via unanimous decision (watch highlights).

With three wins sandwiched between his setbacks to “The Last Stylebender,” Whittaker is feeling open to a potential change in weight classes down the line.

“I want to get back as Israel,” Whittaker told TheMacLife. “I want that third fight, especially the way that second fight went. I want that fight with him.… Mate, I’m good at Middleweight. I think I will test the waters at 205 one day, [but] I’m going to give it one last dig, give it one last run at him. I think the best is still to come.

“I’ll get that fight. It’s just a matter of when,” he concluded.

Next up for Whittaker is fellow former title challenger and rival of Adesanya’s, Marvin Vettori. The entertaining 185-pound contenders are set to collide at UFC Paris on Sept. 3, 2022.

“As a fighter, he’s just tough as nails,” said Whittaker. “He’ll go out on his shield, he’s got a well-rounded skillset and he wins a lot. You’ve got to give him that respect — and I do. That’s why I had to push the fight back because I couldn’t give him a full camp. Now, I have a full camp so he’s going to get the best of me.”