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Forget Jones and Volk! Israel Adesanya is pound-for-pound No. 1 fighter: ‘I know that I’m the best’

Israel Adesanya has no time for the pound-for-pound debate.

Currently ranked as the fifth-best fighter in the world in the official Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) rankings, Adesanya has been a consistent figure on the list since first capturing gold in 2019. Since then, “The Last Stylebender” has earned victories in eight title bouts (including interim) and defended his Middleweight crown five times.

Sitting atop the pound-for-pound list at No. 1 and 2, respectively, are Heavyweight and Featherweight champions, Jon Jones and Alexander Volkanovski. Each has ties to Adesanya with Jones being a once-possible dream opponent and the other as his friend and teammate.

Despite now having a friendly relationship with Jones and the longstanding bond with “The Great,” Adesanya disregards the ranks because he knows the truth.

LIVE! Watch UFC 293 PPV On ESPN+ Here!

MASSIVE MIDDLEWEIGHT MATCH! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) makes its highly anticipated return to Sydney, Australia, for the first time in five years on Sat., Sept. 9, 2023, with a 185-pound world title fight inside Qudos Bank Arena. In the ESPN+-streamed pay-per-view (PPV) main event, Middleweight roost-ruler, Israel Adesanya, plans to silence No. 5-seeded contender, Sean Strickland. In UFC 293’s hard-hitting Heavyweight co-main event, No-6-ranked fan favorite, Tai Tuivasa, locks horns with towering Russian, Alexander Volkov (No. 8).

Don’t miss a single second of EPIC face-punching action!

“I never check [the rankings], I just scroll past that. I know that I’m the best. Why would you give a f—k about someone’s opinion about you? I am the best,” Adesanya told Stake. “You need to be player one in your own life, people should see themselves as player one.

“When it’s all said and done, they still might have me as No. 10 on the list, but I wouldn’t give a s—t. Those who love me and appreciate my art, and how I express myself with my art and in life can enjoy the things I’ve left behind.”

Adesanya will look to further extend his case as the very best on the planet against Sean Strickland in UFC 293’s pay-per-view (PPV) main event in Sydney, Australia, next weekend (Sat., Sept. 9, 2023). Known for his all-time great talents as a striker, Adesanya doesn’t want his grappling abilities to be slept on against “Tarzan.”

“It’s coming. I promise you, it’s coming,” Adesanya said of his first career submission win. “I’m getting the neck from these motherf—kers. I’m taking their breath away, romantically. I can’t wait, it’s coming.

“You should see me in the gym, I’m nice with it, but I’m still learning,” he concluded. “Under the lights, there is going to be a moment that I take a neck. I’m a purple belt by color but I still feel like a white belt.”

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 293 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPNN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 293: “Adesanya vs. Strickalnd” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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