Sean Strickland Snaps Back at Jared Cannonier for Counting Him Out of Title Fight with Israel Adesanya: ‘Makes Me Laugh’

Strickland doesn't appreciate being underestimated by his former opponent

Sean Strickland
Courtesy of @UFCNews on Twitter

Sean Strickland had a few choice words for former opponent and fellow middleweight title contender Jared Cannonier.

With top-ranked contender Dricus Du Plessis unable to make a quick turnaround following his second-round destruction of Robert Whittaker at UFC 290, outspoken standout Sean Strickland has seemingly been tapped for a title fight with reigning middleweight world champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 293 in September. 

Since news of Strickland’s injection into the main event spot, sportsbooks have overwhelmingly favored Adesanya to come out on top in the proposed title tilt, having ‘The Last Stylebender’ listed as high as a four-to-one favorite. But it’s not the oddsmakers that have Strickland in a bad mood. It’s ex-opponent Jared Cannonier, who suggested that ‘Tarzan’ has little chance of scoring the upset in what will be his first shot at UFC gold. 

“Izzy’s not an easy fight and the way those styles match up, I don’t think Sean will be able to work his jab, you know what I mean? His funky a** footwork,” Cannonier told Helen Yee. “His ability to evade shots. I think Izzy is way too long. He’s a sniper and he’s too diverse. He’s too versatile with his striking and I don’t think Sean’s grappling is good enough to make it a factor. To make it as competitive.”

Sean Strickland Takes Dig at Ex-Opponent Jared Cannonier

Strickland didn’t take kindly to his former foe’s comments and snapped back at Cannonier in true ‘Tarzan’ fashion. 

“Makes me laugh to hear Cannonier opinion on me and Izzy.. I like him but man I won that fight, you know I won that fight, the announcers know I won the fight. I won the fight in first gear lol but yes you threw really hard, I don’t know what they felt like but they looked hard,” Strickland tweeted.

Strickland and Cannonier headlined a UFC Fight Night card late last year that saw ‘The Killa Gorilla’ escape with a closely contested split decision. Since then, Cannonier has added another impressive win over perennial contender Marvin Vettori in June to re-establish himself as a legitimate title contender in the middleweight division.

As for Strickland, ‘Tarzan’ is coming off back-to-back wins after falling short against Cannonier. Strickland bounced back with a unanimous decision victory over Nassourdine Imavov. He followed that up with a vicious second-round TKO against Abus Magomedov earlier this month, his first finish since 2020. 

Despite being 3-2 in his last five, Strickland seemingly makes the most sense when seeking a title challenger for Adesanya in September considering the fact that the ‘Stylebender’ has already dispatched five of the division’s top seven contenders. The only two omitted from that list are Dricus Du Plessis and Sean Strickland.

Published on July 26, 2023 at 11:03 am
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