UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya likes the idea of a fight with Khamzat Chimaev but he has his eyes set elsewhere for now but encourages the challenge in the future.
Chimaev has made it known that he wants a fight with Adesanya, speaking on his YouTube channel, the undefeated Swede said; “For Israel, there’s nobody there – only me.
“So, if you spoke about money, if you ask the fans, they want to see me and Israel. I’m a bad matchup for him. Everyone knows he’s going to lose the title (to me). That’s why they save that guy. They don’t want to lose him that fast. (I’d) finish that guy without punches, and that’s why they’re scared. Then (his) story’s dead, you know?”
Adesanya,33, reclaimed his middleweight crown by defeating Alex Pereira by knockout this past April at UFC 287.
‘The Last Stylebender’ now has his eye on the winner of Robert Whittaker vs Dricus du Plessis, who will be competing at the T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nevada.
Adesanya, speaking on the ‘Impulsive ‘ podcast shared his thoughts on making a fight with Chimaev.
“Trust me, I’m not scared of nobody on this (expletive) planet. No one. And also, guess what, I like a challenge. Chimaev presents something unique that — I’ve seen wrestlers before.
“It’s a big fight. That’s why I like it. The money makes it better. But he’s got Kamaru (Usman) and after that is probably gonna go for the title (if he wins). I’ve got bigger fish to fry. I’m gonna be there in July (for UFC 290) and I’ll see what’s up. Not with Rob, with Du Plessis.”
Adesanya suffered a controversial points loss to Pereira in their first fight, a kickboxing match. In their rematch, also in kickboxing, Adesanya was leading but was knocked out. In November, in their first MMA clash, again Adesanya was ahead, but he was beaten in the final round.
After seven years in which they have fought four times, ‘The Last Stylebender’ finally got his win over Pereira, and in stunning fashion in April.’’