Israel Adesanya was soundly defeated by middleweight contender Sean Strickland in the UFC 293 pay-per-view (PPV) main event last weekend in Sydney. Fans of “The Last Stylebender” have been scrambling for excuses to explain the former champ’s defeat, which to some degree discredits the career-best performance from “Tarzan.”
Count welterweight rising star Ian Garry among those detractors.
“I feel like Izzy lost the fight more than Strickland won the fight,” Garry told The MMA Hour. “I feel like there was a certain point in that fight where Izzy was afraid to lose more than he wanted to win. That is essentially meant that his efficiency, his output, his shot selection wasn’t as elite as it normally is and it gave Strickland the opportunity for his awkwardness to have success, his constant pressure to have success. I feel like if you run that fight back, there’s no way Strickland gets his hand raised again. That’s my opinion, but at the end of the day, Strickland got his hand raised and I can never shoot a man for reaching his dream.”
That was “a really stupid thing to say,” according to Chael Sonnen.
“That is just not an analysis,” the two-time UFC title challenger said on YouTube. “You go watch Izzy and you go watch Sean fight, it’s a one-sided ass kicking. The whole thing comes to an end and Ian Garry believes that it wasn’t Sean that did a great job, it was Izzy that beat up himself? At what point? At what point Ian Machado Garry can I go back and look into that fight and find Israel Adesanya punching himself in the face? Or kicking himself? When can I find his legs get tripped and he decides to flat-back and get swarmed until he comes back up to his feet again? What within that fight do you possibly mean that Izzy beat himself?”
Strickland dropped Adesanya in the opening round and never took his foot off the gas.
“If your way of proving this silly and ridiculous statement that you just put out, where you got cliches from all over the fighting world, none of which you created on your own, if your way of proving that to be true is to rematch them again and get a different outcome and then you can sit back and say, ‘See, I told you.’ Well, not really,” Sonnen continued. “That’s called a prediction. Predictions come from guys hanging around the water cooler. You’re a fighter giving an analysis and a breakdown. I’m a fighter who gives analyses and breakdowns. I don’t have the foggiest idea what you just said.”