Israel Adesanya denies Bo Nickal could easily submit him ahead of potential fight: ‘This isn’t wrestling, this is MMA’

Israel Adesanya

Ahead of his incoming UFC 281 headliner tonight at Madison Square Garden, undisputed middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya maintains emerging prospect, Bo Nickal will struggle to submit him as predicted in a potential future fight, pointing to his lack of experience in mixed martial arts competition.

Making his third Octagon appearance this year, Adesanya takes curtain closing honors at UFC 281 in the ‘Big Apple’ – clashing with division challenger and former kickboxing rival, Alex Pereira – attempting to avenge a pair of losses to the Brazilian challenger.

As for Nickal, the decorated amateur wrestler earned his UFC contract off the back of a double appearance on Dana White’s Contender Series – most recently submitting Donovan Beard with a first minute armbar.

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Off the back of his win, Nickal, who was expected to make his Octagon debut at UFC 282 next month against Jamie Pickett, saw the bout cancelled after he suffered an undisclosed injury.

The Colorado native has been linked with a potential future fight against both Adesanya, and the undefeated welterweight finisher, Khamzat Chimaev since his signature to the promotion, predicting a submission win over the middleweight kingpin in the process.

Israel Adesanya urges Bo Nickal to slow his roll on a future title fight

Taking umbrage with Nickal’s bold statement and prediction, Adesanya reminded the youngster that despite his wrestling expertise, the sport they compete in is mixed martial arts.

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“Okay – everyone has an opinion, so he (Bo Nickal) has a right to his opinion,” Israel Adesanya said during an interview on Morning Kombat.

Adesanya’s main qualms with Nickal’s comments and statement, come from the fact that many speculate how good his wrestling defense actually is, given the fact many contenders have rarely attempted to take down the Nigerian-Kiwi.

“…Nobody has ever tried to take me down and submit me,” Israel Adesanya continued. “I think everyone is just – I could say whatever I want to say about him as well. I actually gave him props like, he’s doing what he’s doing. But, I’d like to see more. He’s only just got here [to the UFC], and I know he’s a decorated wrestler but this is not wrestling, this is MMA. There’s way to exploit wrestlers in MMA.”