Las Vegas, NV — Another night at the office sees Israel Adesanya leaving Las Vegas with his middleweight title in hand.
Adesanya (23-1) saw little resistance against Jared Cannonier in a low-action five round middleweight fight topping the UFC 276 card. The fifth title defense for “The Last Stylebender” was met with jeers and boos from fans as the fight wore on, however.
Following the event, Adesanya had a response for those fans, saying bluntly “F*ck ’em. F*ck ’em. They’ve been here since 3PM, they’re all drunk, they don’t know what real fighting is or real finesse.”
Speaking to media outlets including Cageside Press backstage at the T-Mobile Arena, Adesanya went on to state that “I’ve said this, the greats, they all get to this point. I’ve seen it when I was just a fan, still a fan. Anderson Silva, GSP, I remember fights where I’d be like ‘that was a f*cking fantastic fight,’ and the same thing, people would just boo them. GSP, one of the f*cking GOATs, and people would just boo him. I’m like ‘what the f*ck are you guys watching? You’re dumb f*cks.'”
“Ali, Floyd Mayweather, same thing,” Adesanya continued. “You get to this point where it’s like you’re so great, people just want to see you fall. They just want to see you fall, no matter what. And if’s not like a show-off, spectacular performance, then it’s like ‘arrr he’s not even that good!’ But trust, Jared knows I’m a good fighter. He knows I’m a great fighter, and I gave him the same credit as well.”
With Cannonier vanquished, exciting fight or not, it will be on to the next one soon enough. That will be a highly anticipated fight with Alex Pereira, who holds two wins over Israel Adesanya in kickboxing, including one knockout.
“That’s the next fight. I saw his fight,” Adesanya confirmed. “It was a good fight, but Sean Strickland should have focused on his job like I told him to.”
Arguably the biggest story surrounding Adesanya’s latest title defense wasn’t about the fight itself, but his walkout — an homage to WWE’s The Undertaker, one of the most iconic pro wrestlers of all time, and arguably the greatest entrance of all time, be it wrestling, boxing, or MMA. Vince and Stephanie McMahon, as well as Triple H (Paul Levesque) were on hand to witness Adesanya’s take, complete with funeral urn.
“It just works. The theme, for me, I’m an artist. It just works. I didn’t plan on Vince and Triple H and them being here.” Adesanya revealed that he’d been listening to an Attitude Era soundtrack after practice when the inspiration came to him. “Big shout out to the UFC production team, because they were really accommodating and just helpful to make it a show. This is the UFC, you want to give them a show, and I said all week, this feels like WrestleMania. And who’s undefeated at WrestleMania? The Undertaker.”
Technically, another UFC star, Brock Lesnar, broke The Undertaker’s undefeated streak, but point taken. And for the record, like many, Izzy’s favorite Undertaker match is Hell in a Cell with Mick Foley.
Watch the full UFC 276 post-fight press conference with Israel Adesanya above.