Israel Adesanya is staying motivated heading into his return to the Octagon.
The UFC Middleweight Champion last defended his belt at UFC 263, where he decisioned Marvin Vettori. Heading into 2022, Adesanya will look to dispatch another familiar foe. This time, it comes in the shape of Robert Whittaker at UFC 271.
‘The Last Stylebender’ would style on Whittaker the first time around, back in 2019. Adesanya would get two knockdowns before ending the Aussie’s title reign on his home turf.
Proving Himself Once Again
Fast forward two years and Adesanya looks to do it again… but this time, even better. Come next month, Izzy wants to make a statement.
“This is the best I’ve ever come into a camp in shape, and I’m not going out of shape I promise you that,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “I have a point to prove to myself, but just also to like, you know, those people, I just want to shut them the f*ck up. I mean the motivation for me is just that he’s not making excuses like (Marvin) Vettori or (Paulo) Costa.”
Whittaker’s Worked His Way Back Up
Unlike like Vettori or Costa, Whittaker hasn’t had much excuses to spew since losing to Adesanya. He would accept the loss for what it was, citing that he was too emotional. Instead of talking more of the talk, he would walk the walk. After getting his title snatched, ‘Bobby Knuckles’ would go on a tear, winning his next three fights.
He has he looked better and better in every fight. The former champ holds a trio of wins over Darren Till, Jared Cannonier and Kelvin Gastelum. With a new hype to his name, Adesanya looks to stop him again.
“He’s accepted his loss. He finally admitted that I was in his head, and he was emotional, and I was like, ‘Yeah, you finally admitted what I was saying this whole f*cking time,’ so that makes me take him seriously. He’s accepted that, so that makes me take him seriously that OK, he’s got a point to prove, as well.
“He’s been training. He’s motivated. That gets me up in the morning to shut him up again worse than the first time. That’s what gets me motivated.”
It might be a bit aggressive, but Adesanya has found his new motivation ahead of his next title defense.