The now former champion struggled to actually get any type of rhythm going in opposition to Sean Strickland, who saved up a powerful tempo, showcased unbelievable protection and simply constantly peppered Adesanya with punches over 5 rounds. Strickland additionally scored a jaw-dropping knockdown early within the combat that basically set the tone for his victory with Adesanya simply by no means discovering his footing earlier than dropping the unanimous choice.
Even UFC president Dana White was dumbfounded at how the entire combat performed out however notably the place Adesanya was involved.
“Clearly, I anticipated a very completely different principal occasion,” White stated on the UFC 293 post-fight press convention. “Whether or not Izzy gained or Strickland gained, no person noticed that coming.
“That Izzy would are available in flat and sluggish and no matter’s occurring with him, I don’t assume anyone anticipated to see that.”
In response to UFC stats, Strickland outlanded Adesanya 137 to 94 in complete strikes whereas scoring the one knockdown together with his close to end within the opening spherical. Strickland additionally managed the tempo all through as he marched ahead whereas making use of fixed stress as Adesanya largely operated together with his again in opposition to the cage with out actually providing a lot resistance.
“He regarded like he couldn’t get off,” White stated. “He regarded like he was actually stiff tonight. He regarded very sluggish. Solely Israel is aware of what’s occurring. I’m very curious to see what he says at this press convention tonight.
“There are 1,000,000 issues that would go flawed. Some days you get up and also you’re simply not there, man. It’s simply not there. He regarded bone-dry tonight, standing up actually tall. He regarded very sluggish. He regarded like he couldn’t get off in any respect. Even within the fifth spherical when all people knew he wanted a knockout to win the combat, there was no sense of urgency to attempt to end the combat. So I don’t know if he’s harm or if tonight’s the evening.”
The loss to Strickland got here simply 5 months after Adesanya vanquished arguably his biggest boogeyman so far when he knocked out Alex Pereira in April. Of their first encounter within the UFC, Pereira scored a late fifth-round knockout to beat Adesanya to win the middleweight title, which adopted an much more vicious end from the Brazilian after they clashed in kickboxing a couple of years earlier.
Adesanya lastly bought his revenge in opposition to Pereira earlier than he shifted his consideration to Strickland on Saturday.
White recommended that maybe the excessive stakes in these two fights might have performed some half within the deflated efficiency from Adesanya on Saturday.
“That may very well be the factor, too — when you concentrate on you’re going into the Pereira combat, such an enormous combat and also you’ve been in there with this man so many instances and then you definitely overlook Strickland,” White stated. “I don’t know the solutions to those questions however Israel does and I’m trying ahead to listening to it.”
In his transient post-fight assertion, Adesanya solely supplied Strickland congratulations on the victory with out particularly addressing his efficiency.
Regardless of Adesanya dropping 49-46 throughout all three scorecards when the combat was over, White nonetheless believes working it again once more would be the most reasonable conclusion for the middleweight division.
That will not be the reply contenders like Dricus Du Plessis or Khamzat Chimaev wished to listen to however White appeared resolved in his plans to offer Adesanya one other shot at Strickland following the stunning upset at UFC 293.
“I believe you do the rematch,” White stated. “Completely. The rematch is fascinating.”