The undisputed middleweight champion of the UFC, Israel Adesanya is going to defend his belt against the former champion, Robert Whittaker in a title rematch at the main event of UFC 271. Adesanya dethroned Whittaker by knocking him out in the second round of their contest at UFC 243, and “The Reaper” is hell-bent on getting that belt back.
There were plenty of mind games in their first meeting, and during the build-up for this rematch, Whittaker accepted the fact that Adesanya got inside his head, and he walked inside the octagon a lot more emotional than he should’ve been. That clearly affected his performance, and he worked his way up to the top to rightfully earn his shot.
Adesanya went on to defend his belt against the killers of the division, the trash talk, and build-up for his fights against Paulo Costa and Marvin Vettori were legendary, but there is something special about the Whittaker vs Adesanya. These two are probably the best middleweights on planet earth, and their genuine hate for each other makes their rivalry much more interesting.
Israel Adesanya is very critical about the advice and criticism he receives from his friends and coaches
Adesanya is just a free spirit, and he has proved himself inside the octagon on a number of occasions, he is just trying his best to leave a mark on the combat sports history, and the criticism of people around him is very important to him. He talked about this in his recent interview with MainEvent, he said, “I’m an artist so I care what certain people think about me. Like people around me, people who .. like my coaches, whatever they say mean something to me, but if you’re just some dude with the fake account on the internet or some guy on the other side of the screen, it doesn’t mean anything.”
He added, “Like you don’t have any attachment to those people, but those who I give a f*ck about, I give a f*ck what they say about me, so that’s … I mean that’s what’s kept me grounded so far.”