Last night undoubtedly belonged to Israel Adesanya at UFC 243. Adesanya, then the interim 185-pound champion, stepped into the cage against Robert Whittaker to unify their middleweight titles.
It was the “Stylebender” show from start to finish. Adesanya knocked Whittaker down to end the first round. Had there been more time on the clock, the fight likely would’ve been stopped. In the second round, Adesanya picked up where he left off, finishing Whittaker with a beautiful countershot.
Now, Adesanya is the 185-pound champion of the world, and will likely step into the Octagon against Paulo Costa next. However, a beef between Adesanya and light heavyweight king Jon Jones has been brewing for some time now. It’s very possible he and “Bones” square off next as well.
Future UFC Hall Of Famer Daniel Cormier commented on a potential showdown between Jones and Adesanya on the ESPN+ post-fight show. “DC” – who knows Jones better than anyone else inside the Octagon – noted that Jones’ size can be deceiving, and that’s something Adesanya might struggle with in a potential fight. (H/T MMA Junkie)
“He’s just small,” Cormier said. “He’s just small for Jones. Jones is a big guy, and I think people underestimate how big he is when he grabs you because he’s so big up top. They make fun of how small his legs are, but he’s 225 (pounds). But a lot of the weight is on top, and it’s almost like he hangs on you. It’s like a towel when you’re in the clinch, and I think Izzy may struggle with that because Jones is so big.”
Cormier did note, however, that if Jones is forced to stand and strike with Adesanya, he could be in for a long night.
“I would not mind watching them fight because if Jones has to stand with this guy, he’s in trouble,” Cormier said. “Jones is very hittable. But Izzy needs to get a lot bigger if he’s going to fight this guy.”
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