Israel Adesanya tested the light heavyweight division earlier this year
Adesanya will be defending his middleweight title against Marvin Vettori this weekend in the main event of UFC 263. This will be ‘The Last Stylebender’s third successive title-defense if he manages to pull it off.
He is coming into the fight at the back of the first loss in his MMA career.
Having won 20 fights in a row, and having conquered the middleweight division to the fullest, Adesanya decided to move to the light heavyweight division in a bid to become a two-division champ.
Jan Blachowicz, the LHW champ, stood in his path. The pair faced off at UFC 259, and Adesanya was handed the first-ever loss in his MMA career, as he went down via. unanimous decision.
The Nigerian returned to the middleweight division following this loss.
In a recent interview with Submission Radio, UFC President Dana White revealed if Adesanya would ever move back again to the light heavyweight division, when asked by Denis Shkuratov.
“I don’t know. That’s up to him. Obviously, come back to middleweight; knock out a few more wins. Show your dominance here again at middleweight. And then maybe he does move back up or rides out the rest of his career and tries to become the greatest middleweight of all time.”
Adesanya expressed interest in fighting Darren Till in a middleweight bout recently. Till is currently expected to face Derek Brunson at UFC 266.
Israel Adesanya believes Marvin Vettori hasn’t improved much since their first meeting
Adesanya and Vettori first fought in April 2018. The Nigerian managed to win the fight via. a split decision.
In a recent interview with Helen Yee, Adesanya claimed that Vettori has just improved marginally since their first meeting, and also slammed his unimpressive fight resume.
“He’s improved about 10% more, but nothing substantial enough…Since we last fought, look at his run, look at my run. I can mention two guys he’s fought that I actually know of. You can mention every single person I fought, because we’re not the same, we’re on two different lanes.”
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