Former UFC middleweight champion, Robert Whittaker returns to the octagon on April 17. The Reaper takes on Paulo Costa in the main event of UFC Fight Night.
Ever since his move to middleweight, Robert Whittaker has been an unstoppable force. He went through the toughest fighters of the UFC middleweight division such as Derek Brunson, Jacare Souza, Yoel Romero, to win the UFC title.
However, Whittaker’s winning streak came to an end when he stood across “The Last Stylebender”, Israel Adesanya at UFC 243. Adesanya knocked Whittaker out in the second round winning the undisputed middleweight champion.
The mystique and aura around Adesanya’s elite striking is something his opponents find hard to figure out. At middleweight, Israel Adesanya might just be unbeatable. He has beaten powerhouses such as Yoel Romero and Paulo Costa, he has beaten wrestlers such as Derek Brunson, and he has beaten all-rounded mixed martial artists such as Robert Whittaker and Anderson Silva.
Robert Whittaker reveals the secret behind Adesanya’s success
Whittaker recently talked about the trickiest thing about Israel Adesanya in a recent interview with Celebrity Gamerz and said:
“His timing and height, for sure. He is good at striking and he has the physical attributes to utilize to its possibility. He can time the punches and can hit you from like a meter away. It’s hard. He’s quick.”
Until his loss to Jan Blachowicz, nobody was able to overcome the striking prowess of Adesanya. But, the loss to Blachowicz has exposed some holes in Adesanya’s game.
Israel Adesanya had a huge reach advantage over his past opponents at the middleweight division. Though Adesanya is an elite striker the reach always played a factor in the outcome of his fights. However, he struggled against Jan Blachowicz as the light heavyweight champion is as big as Adesanya in size.
Jan Blachowicz has some serious power and he was able to get the attention of Adesanya early in the fight. Now Daniel Cormier has said that Adesanya was not able to capitalize on his feints in his fight against Jan Blachowicz. However, that does not seem logical. A better explanation of Adesanya’s lack of success can be Jan’s power and the fact that he is a skilled striker.
Jan Blachowicz defended a lot of leg kicks from Adesanya in the first three rounds. He was even landing the bigger shots. However, the middleweights might not have the same level of success as Jan Blachowicz.
Robert Whittaker has already fought Israel Adesanya and he lost the fight via TKO. However, it’s very likely that he will be the next challenger for Adesanya. Currently, Whittaker is scheduled to take on Kelvin Gastelum on April 17th. And if he beats Gastelum then the fans can finally see the anticipated rematch between Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya.