UFC 243: Israel Adesanya Crowned Champion

UFC 243: Israel Adesanya Crowned Champion

UFC 243 at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne Australia finalizes in fantastic fashion after a pretty good night of fights. The preliminary card was entertaining to watch and the main card certainly did not disappoint.

Preliminary Card Results

  • Megan Anderson def. Zarah Fairn Dos Santos via Triangle Choke submission (round 1)
  • Brad Riddell def. Jaimie Mullarkey via Unanimous Decision
  • Callan Potter def. Maki Pitolo via Unanimous Decision
  • Jake Matthews def. Rostem Akman via Unanimous Decision

Overall the Prelims really didn’t disappoint too bad. Not the Best fights, but I can easily say that Brad Riddell vs. Jaimie Mullarkey stole the show on the prelims. Back and forth exchanges, both guys swinging for the fences and going for the knockout finish. The fight ended with both guys on their knees and Riddell throwing one last nasty right hand just before the final bell rang, that’s the definition of fighting to the bell. Megan Anderson performed a pretty nice transition to a triangle choke in the first round to secure a victory. Callen Potter vs. Maki Pitolo had some good moments throughout the fight until the 3rd round, where Potter took complete control on the ground for just about the entire round. Jake Matthews vs Rostem Akman was the stinker of the prelims. There was very little action from Akman. No exciting moments from either fighter, but Jake Matthews clearly did more work throughout the fight and then coasted to victory.

Main Card Results

  • Yorgan De Castro def. Justin Tafa via Knockout (round 1)
  • Dhiego Lima def. Luke Jumeau via Split Decision
  • Sergey Spivak def. Tai Tuivasa via Arm Triangle submission (round 2)
  • Dan Hooker def. Al Iaquinta via Unanimous Decision
  • Israel Adesanya def. Robert Whittaker via Knockout/TKO (round 2)

The main card didn’t disappoint at all from top to bottom, as there were pretty good moments in just about every fight. The first fight to kick off the main card ended with a walk off flash knockout punch by debuting heavyweight, Yorgan De Castro inside of the first round. Dhiego Lima dictated his fight with some very solid leg kicks right from the very beginning ending with what I thought was a pretty lopsided victory. Sergey Spivac made some waves in the heavyweight division by showing off his skills in Judo resulting in 7 takedowns, brutal ground and pound and a solid arm triangle choke to get the job done. 15th ranked lightweight Dan Hooker, adds another impressive name to his resume of victories by defeating 6th ranked lightweight, Al Iaquinta. Oh and Dan Hooker also called out Dustin Poirier for his next fight.

Israel Adesanya becomes the new Undisputed Middleweight Champion of the world after defeating reigning Champion Robert Whittaker with a counter left hook. Going into this fight, Robert Whittaker was undefeated at 185lbs and was on a 9 fight winning streak. Israel Adesanya extends his pro MMA record to 18-0.

I thought Robert Whittaker was looking pretty good in this fight, he came out as I expected he would, especially as the smaller fighter. I felt like he controlled the first round all the way up until the late knockdown just before the bell rang. Whittaker came into the second round and again did well putting pressure on Adesanya. Adesanya had been hitting Whittaker with some really nice left hook counters throughout the fight, and did well at catching Whittaker coming inside. I’m actually surprised that Whittaker didn’t take advantage of the some of the pressure he was applying and shoot for a takedown. Adesanya was clearly more calculating and much more patient with his strikes as Whittaker was more focused on closing the distance and swinging for the fences. I’m not shocked that Adesanya won this fight, he clearly was and is the more dynamic and stylistic striker.

There’s rumblings of possibly his first title defense being against Paulo Costa. This matchup would come as no surprise as Costa is coming off a victory over Yoel Romero and obviously there’s heat between Costa and Adesanya. Who do you think Adesanya’s first title defense will be against? Should Whittaker be granted an immediate rematch? What’s to come for Israel Adesanya and the rest of the Middleweight picture?

Photo Credit: UFC.com

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