Israel Adesanya is planning on not fighting in New Zealand for the foreseeable future. Adesanya’s home country is currently under fire for how it’s treating fighters in the country, specifically Israel’s teammate, Dan Hooker.
Dan Hooker is the team captain for City Kickboxing. The gym is home to Hooker, Adesanya, Alexander Volkanovski, and many more fighters coached by Eugene Bareman. Unfortunately, New Zealand has made it difficult for its soldiers to train in peace.
Adesanya on Fighting in New Zealand
Adesanya isn’t a fan of the countries practices and has since vowed to never fight in New Zealand again, even though Israel stated that fighting in a New Zealand stadium was a childhood dream of his in the past.
“You will never see me fight in New Zealand ever again,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel.
“All that money, they can get it from somewhere else. Their rugbys, their crickets and all the others they’re giving exemptions to, but you will never ever see me fight on these shores [again]. That was one of my dreams, to headline a stadium in my backyard. That dream’s dead in the water … that’s just the way I feel right now.”
“It’s like ‘really, this is what you’re using your privilege to do?’ The constant effort to stifle, to break up, to disrupt our team at City Kickboxing from helping team captain Dan ‘Hangman’ Hooker for getting ready for his fight, that’s pissed me off the most.”
Strong Country Ties
In 2019, Adesanya was the UFC’s fighter of the year. However, New Zealand granted Stylebender as the 2020 New Zealand fighter of the year. Beyond that, Adesanya has donated hospital equipment to his country and Nigeria, where he has family ties.
Until New Zealand changes its practices, expect never to see Israel Adesanya fight in New Zealand.