January is always a time of great anticipation as we look forward to the 12 months of MMA action ahead and in this article we’ll pick out a dozen rising stars in the UFC’s ranks that are set to make 2019 a year to remember.
Of all the fighters currently on the rise, the one generating the most excitement may well be middleweight fighter Israel Adesanya.
The 29-year-old remains undefeated in his 15-fight career to date heading into 2019, including having so far compiled a 4-0 record inside the UFC’s Octagon.
All four victories came within the past 12 months, defeating Rob Wilkinson and Marvin Vettori before taking a step up with further wins over Brad Tavares and then Derek Brunson.
A slick, dynamic and creative striker who also holds an extensive 75-5-1 kickboxing record, ‘The Last Stylebender’ has already scooped up three ‘Performance Of The Night’ awards and proven to charasmatic on the mic too, which will only increase his star power in the coming year.
With comparisons being made between Adesanya and former long-time middleweight champion Anderson Silva it’s perhaps a smart move on the UFC’s part to have lined them up to fight each other at UFC 234 on February 10th.
With a title shot believed to be on the cards for the winner, this is a golden opportunity for Adesanya to shine on the big stage and build the kind of reputation that will see him become a must-see star in 2019.