Could Israel Adesanya Really Beat Jon Jones?

By Dazzler
Could Israel Adesanya Really Beat Jon Jones?

The Last Stylebender is Adamant That He Could Beat Jon Jones… One of the Best Kickboxers on the Planet Against the Greatest UFC Fighter Ever? This Fight Could Happen… 

Israel Adesanya knows that he’s one fight away from potential superstardom. We haven’t seen a rise like this since Conor McGregor came along. The Last Stylebender wants to break through the ceiling that prevents most MMA fighters from going mainstream and a win over Robert Whittaker could do that.

Even though Whittaker is one of the toughest fights out there in the middleweight division today – and should be the favourite – Adesanya hasn’t been afraid to call out another name. Jon Jones is the fight he really wants and if he gets past Whittaker, there could be a chance to take on the light-heavyweight king.

But is this really a smart move? Jones is one of the greatest fighters ever and he’s a big guy. And is the interim middleweight champion taking a big risk by looking past ‘The Reaper?’ Michael Bisping doesn’t think so.

Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea, USA TODAY Sports.

Great Strategy

Bisping is a former middleweight champion so it’s fair to say that he’s well-qualified to talk about the rise of Adesanya. He thinks that it’s mostly smart business from the interim champ, as Jones is a bigger name right now. He also believes that the fight could actually happen. Bisping spoke on his ‘Believe You Me’ podcast:

“I like what Israel’s doing. I like that he’s calling out Jon Jones. The fact that he’s even being put in the same sentence as him is great marketing. It’s a great strategy, calling out the biggest, best name possible. That’s awesome, I applaud that. And who knows? The fight might happen down the line. If Adesanya beats Whittaker, which is a very possible outcome, then you might see Jones vs. Adesanya because Jones is running out of good competition. So that might be a fight that happens down the line.”

Jon Jones. Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports.

Problems

Adesanya is a phenomenal kickboxer. Before entering the world of MMA, that’s where the New Zealander made his name. Jones is famous for using his distance to great effect, but he did struggle at times against Thiago Santos in his last fight. That would surely give Adesanya confidence.

“I can see Israel giving him problems. It wouldn’t be fair [to] Jones to sit here and say Adesanya would beat him. But I think it’d be a good fight. I think it’d be more competitive than what people think. I agree with your point [co-host Luis J. Gomez], I think he does fight to his level. I think it’d be a pretty close fight. I’d see it, I’d pay for it, I’d buy that pay-per-view.”

Israel Adesanya. Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports.

Too Small

Realistically, if this fight ever went down, Jones would have to be a massive favourite. He walks around at least 25kg heavier than Adesanya. Could Adesanya’s style trouble him? Potentially, but then remember that he shut down Alexander Gustafsson in their rematch, who is also an excellent kickboxing stylist.

It’s really hard to know how good Adesanya will be at light-heavyweight unless he moves up. We’ve seen Robert Whittaker jump up from welterweight to become the middleweight champion. But then Max Holloway – did you Joe Rogan thinks he’s absolutely, definitely, without a doubt the greatest featherweight of all time – struggled with Dustin Poirier’s power at 155lb.

When you look at Jones and Adesanya’s frame and bear in mind that ‘Bones’ himself is considering a move up to heavyweight, then you’d have to question the interim middleweight champion’s chances. But if he pulled it off he’d be a megastar.