Alongside Jorge Masvidal, Israel Adesanya had the best 2020 in MMA. The undisputed middleweight champion of the world defeated Kelvin Gastelum in a fight of the year contender. Then he knocked out former champion Robert Whittaker inside two rounds.
His charisma and fighting style could make him MMA’s next superstar. But Adesanya has come into conflict with the UFC’s greatest champion, Jon Jones. The pair really don’t like each other and tensions are building. ‘Stylebender’ wants to fight ‘Bones’ in 2021.
The pair have gone back-and-forth again. After Jones slated the Nigerian-born, New Zealand resident on Twitter, Adesanya came back with insults of his own. Speaking to Ariel Helwani, he made his feelings about Jones very clear.
First of all, Adesanya believes that Jones is underestimating him. The pair has never been in the same room together. Stylebender says that Jones will get a surprise when they meet in person because he’s bigger than the American imagines.
“He can say whatever he wants to say, I can say the same thing,” Adesanya said. “I can say whatever I want [but] it’s all words. Eventually, when we see each other, we will see each other. I still have never seen me and him in the same room together. I wonder why. But eventually, we will see each other at some point, and he’s going to have to see me like everybody else does.
“When I see him, he’ll see me, and he’ll feel me. He’ll take me in as the man that I am. All six foot four, skinny..” Adesanya said. “He’ll see me and realize ‘Oh sh*t, this guy ain’t as small as people think.’”
Adesanya also noted that Jones’s record is tarnished because of his cheating record. He’s been suspended multiple times for banned substances. In short, ‘Stylebender’ has no problem ousting Jones and becoming the face of the UFC. In sum, this is a massive year for the champion.
“Why don’t you want to beat me yourself? Why do you not want to try and see me yourself?” Adesanya said. “If Dom beats him it makes no difference. I’m coming for him, I’m coming on him. You wait, in 2021, you’ll see.”
“People are going to remember you because you’re a drug cheat, you’re a steroid cheat,” Adesanya concluded. “That’s all they’re gonna remember, so my walkouts are going to be greater than his whole career. r, people are going to remember my walkouts more than his career.”
Finally, it looks like Adesanya’s next fight will be against Yoel Romero. The Cuban has somehow managed to overtake Paulo Costa in line for a title shot. This is a tough fight because Romero is carved from stone. Credit to Adesanya because he’s definitely taking tough fights. In short, only time will tell if he regrets this decision. Middleweight is a shark’s den right now.
“The fight’s done,” Adesanya said. “I literally just got to the gym now. I’m about to get some work in. Make no mistake, I’m still putting work in. I’m still getting ready for my second title defense against a veteran in the game, a veteran in the wrestling, a tough motherf—–, the boogeyman of the division, the guy no one calls out – except ‘Stylebender.’”
“The fight will happen, and it will happen on our terms as well,” he added. “I’m happy. I have no doubt that I’m going to get what I want out of this fight.”