Robert Whittaker and Dricus du Plessis Weigh in on Sean Strickland’s UFC 293 Victory Over Israel Adesanya

Whittaker and Du Plessis react to Sean Strickland's UFC 293 victory over Adesanya.

Dricus Robert React Ufc 293
Dricus Robert React Ufc 293 - Image credit @stylebender @dricusduplessis Instagram

UFC 293 delivered an exceptional viewing experience for fans, and the main event lived up to the immense hype. Sean Strickland, an unexpected replacement for Dricus du Plessis, who withdrew due to injury, was initially seen by many as an underdog against the middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya. However, the first round of their bout silenced numerous critics.

Israel Adesanya is widely regarded as one of the best counter-strikers in the sport today. He often lures his opponents into close range to land his signature counterpunches.

But in a surprising turn of events, Strickland rocked Adesanya with a colossal right hook that nearly sent the champion into unconsciousness, mere moments before the end of the first round. This turn of events has left Dricus du Plessis pondering what might have occurred had he been in the Octagon instead of Sean!

Posting on X (formerly Twitter), he expressed his astonishment at the fight’s outcome, echoing the surprise shared by everyone in the arena.

The future for the South African fighter is uncertain. UFC President Dana White’s recent remarks regarding Dricus du Plessis’ withdrawal from the UFC 293 event seemed less than pleased. Consequently, the Protea fighter might need to face another top contender before getting a shot at the championship.

Sean Strickland Crowned Middleweight Champion at UFC 293

The first round of the UFC 293 main event was just the beginning of Sean Strickland’s dominance. Throughout the bout, Israel Adesanya struggled to decipher Strickland’s tactics.

Adesanya found his usual bag of tricks ineffective and appeared fatigued after the initial three rounds, sporting noticeable bumps and bruises on his face. As the final round dwindled down to its last 10 seconds, Strickland was confident that he had secured the victory and began taunting Adesanya.

The judges unanimously scored the fight 49-46 in favor of the American fighter, and Adesanya’s post-fight demeanor seemed to concur. “The Last Stylebender” chose not to stay for the post-fight interview, reflecting his disappointment with the outcome. This defeat marks his second loss in his last three fights, and while he had the opportunity to avenge his UFC 281 loss to Pereira, the same might not hold true for his loss to Strickland at UFC 293.

The UFC commentator and renowned podcaster, Joe Rogan, was as taken aback as anyone by the outcome. While he praised Strickland’s performance, he was equally surprised by Adesanya’s inability to connect with any significant strikes. On his Fight Companion JRE podcast, Rogan even pondered whether Adesanya’s emotions might have gotten the best of him. In contrast, Robert Whittaker was absolutely elated with the result.

Published on September 10, 2023 at 9:54 am
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