Dricus Du Plessis eyes champ-champ status with wins over Israel Adesanya and Khamzat Chimaev

Dricus Du Plessis eyes champ-champ status with wins over Israel Adesanya and Khamzat Chimaev

Dricus Du Plessis has his sights set on champ-champ status. But before ‘Stillknocks’ can focus on picking up a second undisputed belt, he’s got some work to do in the middleweight division.

In January, DDP scored a split-decision victory over Sean Strickland to claim the 185-pound crown, setting the stage for a long-awaited showdown with former two-time titleholder Israel Adesanya. When and where that takes place is yet to be determined, but Du Plessis is nonetheless excited for the opportunity to test his skills against one of the greatest fighters the sport has ever seen, solidifying his own legacy in the process.

Dricus Du Plessis

“Beating a guy like Robert Whittaker, becoming a world champion, and then beating one of the greats like Israel Adesanya? How are you not motivated by that? I’ve seen Adesanya as my even when I wasn’t in the UFC,” Du Plessis said on The Sias du Plessis Show.

“I’ve seen him as the guy that I need to beat to become the best. He set the bar. I mean, long before I was in the UFC, he was the champion, and he set the bar of what you need to be to be a champion” (h/t MMA Mania).

Dricus Du Plessis plotting path to light heavyweight title

Should DDP get the job done against Israel Adesanya, he’ll turn his attention toward the winner of the UFC Saudi Arabia headliner between Robert Whittaker and Khamzat Chimaev.

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Whittaker vs. Chimaev

Having already earned a win over ‘The Reaper’ at UFC 290, Du Plessis understandably sees more value in a potential fight with ‘Borz.’

Not only would it help his bid to become the greatest middleweight of all time — it would bring him one step closer to adding another title to his collection.

“If Khamzat beats Whittaker, beating Khamzat? That earns you a spot at light heavyweight,” he said. “If you look at the the greats, the boogeyman, everybody seems to be scared of Khamzat. I would love that fight.”

“But like I said, I have no problem defending my belt a few times before that. For now, my focus is 100% on the middleweight division and my next fight, which in all likelihood would be Israel Adesanya. And that’s where all my focus is. None of the other plans can come together without this.”

Dricus Du Plessis