Who Has Israel Adesanya Lost to in the UFC?
Israel Adesanya is undisputedly a UFC legend in the making. He is a striker par excellence in the UFC and indeed, all of MMA. Even the UFC GOAT Anderson Silva gave props to ‘The Last Stylebender’ for his striking game. However, in recent times, his flamboyant style has come down and been replaced by a more defensive approach.
Michael Bisping boiled this down to the pressure of not losing a title fight. So, as he heads into the Alex Pereira near-grudge match title fight at UFC 281, we wonder, is it possible that Adesanya might lose? To answer the question, let’s look at Adesanya’s only loss in the UFC to date. We will look at who did he lost against, how and what this may mean for the upcoming fight.
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Israel Adesanya’s Only UFC Loss
Israel Adesanya has all the telltale signs of a UFC GOAT. He has had six successful title defenses, He is a bona fide MMA star, and he has constantly evolved his game.
Another big indicator of Adesanya’s MMA pedigree is his attempted move up to light heavyweight. Seasoned MMA fans and UFC followers might remember that we have entered into the era of double-champs. These have included the likes of Conor McGregor, Daniel Cormier and Amanda Nunes. UFC GOAT Jon Jones is set to make his first run at heavyweight at UFC 285 or later.
In a similar fashion, Israel Adesanya also took a shot at moving up a weight division. In mid-2021, he moved up to the 205-pound light heavyweight category and took on Jan Blachowicz at UFC 259. ‘‘The Last Stylebender’ lost this fight via unanimous decision and has not made an attempt to become a champ-champ so far.
Despite being a welterweight champ, most critics and fans agree that Adesanya is on the lighter welterweight side. So, moving up to light heavyweight was not an easy task. And correspondingly, Blachowicz used his greater LHW experience and size advantage to shut Adesanya’s striking down. This led to ‘The Stylebender’ failing to make a significant impact on his opponent and losing the fight.
Can This Happen with Alex Pereira at UFC 281?
Alex Pereira might be Adesanya’s toughest opponent to date. When he goes up against ‘‘The Last Stylebender’ everyone will be watching out for a spectacular KO. Both fighters have incredible striking prowess but the balance of striking power might lean towards Pereira. That said, when it comes to finesse, Adesanya might have the edge and this may be the difference.
However, ‘Poatan’ Pereira has already knocked out Adesanya once and is the only fighter to ever do so. He also beat Adesanya twice and this has been talked to death in the media leading up to UFC 281.
So, the pressure will be on Adesanya to prove his calibre against Pereira. UFC 281 goes live at the historic Madison Square Garden arena on Nov 12, 2022. Find out who else is on the card here:
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