Demetrious Johnson Breaks Down UFC 293 Headliner Between Israel Adesanya and Sean Strickland

"Mighty Mouse" goes in-depth on Adesanya vs. Strickland.

Demetrious Johnson Israel Adesanya Sean Strickland
(via Demetrious Johnson's YouTube & Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Demetrious Johnson has given a rundown of the upcoming UFC middleweight title fight between Israel Adesanya and Sean Strickland.

Adesanya will be putting his 185-pound gold on the line against Strickland in the main event of UFC 293 on September 9. “The Last Stylebender” is a huge betting favorite going into this one, but is there a chance for Strickland to shock the world? Demetrious Johnson thinks he has a pretty good idea of how these two match up.

Demetrious Johnson on Adesanya vs. Strickland

Taking to his YouTube channel, “Mighty Mouse” gave his prediction for the title fight between “The Last Stylebender” and the man who no longer wishes to be called “Tarzan.”

“Obviously, it’s no secret, I believe Izzy Adesanya is gonna win the fight,” Johnson said. “Reason why, he’s too skilled, he’s too slick, he’s too athletic, he’s too good on the feet, and he hasn’t given me an opportunity to doubt his skill set. … Now, on the other side we have Sean Strickland. He has a huge mountain to climb, but that does not mean he can’t climb it.”

Johnson then went in-depth on what makes Adesanya’s striking so effective. He pointed to Izzy’s MMA rematch with Alex Pereira as an example of his strengths.

“Izzy, he’s fast, quick, amazing kickboxing,” Johnson said. “If you go back and watch the fight with Alex, he was doing a good job. I didn’t realize Izzy switched back and forth from southpaw to orthodox a lot. When he switched to southpaw, he threw the body kick. When you throw a body kick, your opponent has to either, one, eat the shot, or X-block. A lot of you guys are asking me, ‘What does X-block mean?’ X-block, when you’re fighting, your hands are here, when I go to block, I make an X with my hand. When I block it, I’m able to absorb the shot and grab the foot and move it.”

The former UFC flyweight champion then shifted his focus on Strickland. He believes someone like Strickland could give Adesanya at least some pause in spots.

“The thing that he does very well is that he is very durable,” Johnson said. “He likes to push the pace, he takes a lot of shots and he always walks across distance. Now, if we go back and watch Izzy’s fights he does have trouble, not like he’s losing, but when somebody doesn’t overextend or cross distance like Yoel Romero, Izzy doesn’t get the opportunity to capitalize on his feints and he doesn’t get the opportunity to counter strike somebody.”

With that said, Johnson made it clear that he believes Adesanya is too fast and “slick” for Strickland to capitalize on that factor.

Published on September 8, 2023 at 3:17 pm
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