Adesanya KOs Whittaker to unify middleweight title
The main event of UFC 243 featured a middleweight unification bout between champion Robert Whittaker and interim champion Israel Adesanya.
It took Israel Adesanya less than two years and only seven fights to become the best middleweight in the UFC.
At UFC 243 from Melbourne, Australia, Adesanya capped off an incredible run since joining the roster by knocking out Robert Whittaker in the second round in a title unification bout in front of more than 57,000 fans inside Marvel Stadium.
Not even four years ago, Adesanya was sitting in the crowd as a fan at UFC 193 in the same stadium only to return with a jaw-dropping knockout at 3:33 in the second round to move to 18-0 in his career while becoming the undisputed UFC middleweight champion.
“I’m real petty. I remember everything like an elephant. Like I said, I was in the nose bleeds and now I made his nose bleed,” Adesanya said following his win.
ISRAEL ADESANYA UNDISPUTED CHAMP https://t.co/4RsKPXB2nS— Connoisseur of Combat (@ConOfCombat) October 6, 2019
Official Result: Israel Adesanya defeated Robert Whittaker by KO (Punches, Round 2, 3:33)
Round 1 – Whittaker light on his feet, bouncing to start. He rushes froward, but Adesanya slips away. Low kick from Adesanya. Whittaker fakes takedown and fires a big left that misses. Low kick from Whittaker. Adesanya with his hands low, looking very relaxed. Adesanya with a big left hand that scores and a right that misses. He’s throwing with power. Adesanya counters with a crisp, relaxed jab. Whittaker with aggressor early. Adesanya seems completely unfazed and he backs away from a high kick. Whittaker looking to press the action. Adesanya content to counter for now. Whittaker lands to the thigh. He’s swinging heavy, but Adesanya slipping and moving well. Low kicks traded, and Whittaker just misses a big punches over the top. Adesanya high kick just short. Adesanya very quick when he lets it go. Whittaker throwing with power, and he misses another high kick. Adesanya also misses high. Whittaker remains the aggressor in the final minute. Adesanya is avoiding well though, and answering back. They clinch briefly, but nothing there. Right hand from Adesanya lands clean just before the bell. Whittaker hits the deck on the uppercut, but the bell sounds before he can land again. Whittaker makes it to his stool, but he’s clearly dazed. MMA Junkie gives the round to Adesanya, 10-9.
Round 2 – Adesanya passes on a glove touch. Whittaker pressing, and he does land a few punches. Adesanya kicks low, but Whittaker counters over the top. Whittaker seems to have recovered, but Adesanya settles and slips his attacks. Whittaker reaching with his punches. Adesanya remains elusive. Jab lands for Adesanya. Right hand lands clean, and Whittaker is stunned. High kick lands for Adesanya. Whittaker showing a hell of a chin. Several of those shots were vicious. Whittaker’s nose bleeding badly now. Still, he’s upright for now. Adesanya goes to work on the legs. Whittaker lands a left hand over the top. High kick thrown, but Adesanya slips it. Another partially lands. Whittaker lands a left hand. Big hooks traded, and it’s Adesanya that lands clean. Whittaker staggers to the canvas. Adesanya follows, and he unleashes the punches needed to finish the job. Brutal. Adesanya scales the fence to celebrate, and to yell at Paulo Costa, who’s sitting cageside.