Israel Adesanya Sets Sight On Jon Jones And Third UFC Title
It’s been just over one year since Israel Adesanya predicted that he would fight Jon Jones at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, in 2021. At the time of his prediction, the Raiders Stadium was still under construction.
Since his prediction, Adesanya has won the UFC middleweight title and defended it twice, Jones has vacated his light heavyweight title to move up to heavyweight, Jan Blachowicz beat Dominick Reyes to win the vacant 205lbs title, and ‘The Last Stylebender’ and UFC president Dana White have confirmed that he will challenge Polish 37 year old in early 2021.
“This Is perfect”
After all the back and forth with Jones, and the promises of moving up to face the Albuquerque native, the Blachowicz fight feels like the perfect stepping stone. Speaking to Submission Radio (as transcribed by MMA Fighting), Adesanya opened up on how his plans changed after Robert Whittaker defeated Jared Cannonier at UFC 254.
“Robert did well to stifle Jared and broke his arm, and I was looking forward to that fight,” Adesanya said. “So, I was like, alright. And then it’s like the ultimate alley-oop from the universe. I’m like, yes, it’s perfect. And this is the thing, you have to be flexible in this game. In life, you have to be flexible, cause nothing’s certain, nothing’s given. The landscape of things change all the time. And yeah, this is just right there for the taking. So, I was like, this is perfect. This is perfect for that Jones fight I keep talking about, this is perfect leading up to it.”
With a new plan, Adesanya is excited to test himself against the legendary ‘Polish Power’.
“With Jan, he’s a good fighter, he’s solid on the ground, he’s awkward on the feet, very dangerous, and he poses a lot of problems,” Adesanya said. “And like, the Whittaker fight wouldn’t get me hard. This gets me hard. Like, this is like, alright, let’s go.”
“He’s dangerous on the ground, he’s awkward on the feet, got that legendary Polish power. But yeah, everyone’s got power, right? I mean, it’s something I proved in my last fight. I told y’all. You have to deliver that power somehow, you have to get it to the target. I’m not the easiest target to hit.”
F*** Jon Jones
Of course, it wouldn’t be an Adesanya interview without throwing some shade at Jones.
“It’s just a big f*** you to him, just to be like, I did something you couldn’t,” Adesanya said. “I mean, he cleared the division of the light heavyweight twice over and then started fighting recycled middleweights. So, don’t come at me talking about ‘move up in weight and fight’ when you can’t even do the same thing after over ten years in the company. So, I’m actually about to do it. It’s a good fight for me to do it with.”
With Jones setting his sights on the heavyweight title, Adesanya believes it’s plausible that he could make a run at a third UFC title, should the former light heavyweight champion win gold in his new division.
“I realise I’m about to do something in literally in three years, what Jones hasn’t even done in over how long in the company? Over ten years,” Adesanya continued. “I’m about to do it in three years and move up in weight. He’s doing it now after how long? And we’re still waiting to seeing if he’s actually gonna do it. And like, it’s crazy how everything’s just set up, man. [When] I take this belt from Jan, if for whatever reason Jones actually moves up and fights at heavyweight, like, imagine if he got the belt somehow, by some freak of nature, and I’m like, f*** you, I’m going to heavyweight then. Three belts at the same time.”
“Biggest Fight In UFC history”
Speaking at UFC Vegas 12 this past weekend, Adesanya stated the importance of having a crowd when he fights Jones, in what he believes will be the ‘biggest fight in UFC history’.
“I said I’m going to fight the supposed GOAT, 2021, Raiders Stadium,” Adesanya said. “I’m hoping to god after these elections all this corona s*** vanishes and then we can have crowds again, because that fight needs to be in front of a crowd. It’s going to be the biggest fight in UFC history, I believe, bar any fight that’s been put up.”
Despite Jones’ attempts to hurry the fight with Adesanya, the reigning middleweight champion remains true to his masterplan.
“If not Raiders, I’m thinking Texas, because I have the gate for the largest attendance in the world at 57,127, so I’m thinking Raiders Stadium. If not, [the AT&T] Stadium. There’s more to come, but I’m just saying, baby steps. Everything I’ve planned, strategy in the game of war.”
How does Israel Adesanya fare moving up in weight against Jan Blachowicz and Jon Jones?