UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya criticized rival Sean Strickland for not listening to him ahead of the recent UFC 276 pay-per-view.
Adesanya fought Jared Cannonier in the main event, and in a featured main card bout, Strickland took on feared striker Alex Pereira. However, during all of fight week, it seemed like Strickland was more focused on a future fight against Adesanya as he spent much of media week trying to get under the skin of the champion. While Strickland would have gotten the next title shot at 185lbs with a win over Pereira, he instead faltered as he was brutally knocked out in the first round.
With Pereira winning the fight, it’s he who will be next in line to fight Adesanya, while Strickland will have to go back to the drawing board now. Speaking on his YouTube channel, Adesanya dissected the performance of Strickland and suggested that he should have taken his advice.
“He should’ve listened to me. He should’ve listened to me when I told him, ‘Just focus on the guy you have in front of you, not me.’ He was trying to be like that idiot in the back of the class. I hated having to address that idiot. Like, I’m trying to f*cking work and the guy I’m focused on is next to me or down the line and this idiot, this dumbass in the back of the class just disrupting,” Adesanya said (via MMAjunkie.com). “I was like, ‘Yo, it’s not me you need to worry about. Focus on this guy. He thought he had the opportunity, and I’m like, ‘OK, bet.’ If he actually did what he had to do, me and him would be fighting next.”
Do you agree with Israel Adesanya that Sean Strickland made a mistake by not taking his advice ahead of UFC 276?
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