Israel Adesanya reveals he agreed to headline UFC 300 against Dricus Du Plessis but the champ turned it down

By Cole Shelton - February 27, 2024

Israel Adesanya has revealed that he was offered to headline UFC 300 against Dricus Du Plessis for the middleweight title.

Israel Adesanya and Dricus Du Plessis

Adesanya’s coach recently came out and shared that ‘The Last Stylebender’ had ended his hiatus and was back in training and ready to return to MMA. Immediately, many thought that meant he would main event UFC 300, but the promotion ultimately booked Alex Pereira vs. Jamahal Hill for April’s pay-per-vieww headliner.

Now, speaking on Theo Von’s podcast, Israel Adesanya revealed that he was offered to headline UFC 300 and accepted but it was Dricus Du Plessis who turned it down.

“There’s some things that were meant to happen. They summoned me, they summoned me I’m sure this is out there now, Eugene said some stuff, but they summoned me for 300 and I was like ‘yep, let’s roll.’ But their side didn’t want it. They didn’t want it,” Adesanya said on Theo Von’s podcast. “They just fought Strickland so maybe he had a little bit of niggly injuries and stuff, but we’ve all got niggles and what not. But, I’ve fought injured for the last how many fights, that’s why I took time off just to let my body heal. It has healed and I’m sure there will be more injuries, it just happens through training. Like what we do for work, it’s constantly something.”

As Israel Adesanya says, Dricus Du Plessis just fought in January and did take some damage at the hands of Sean Strickland, so to return four months later would have been tough. But it appears the UFC’s hope was for Du Plessis to face Adesanya in the headliner of UFC 300 in April.

With Du Plessis vs. Adesanya not headlining 300, it’s uncertain when or if the fight will happen, but all signs point to that being next.

Without Dricus Du Plessis vs. Israel Adesanya at UFC 300, the card currently is as follows:

  • Alex Pereira vs Jamahal Hill
  • Justin Gaethje vs. Max Holloway
  • Zhang Weili vs. Yan Xiaonan
  • Charles Oliveira vs. Arman Tsarukyan
  • Jiri Prochazka vs. Aleksandar Rakic
  • Calvin Kattar vs. Aljamain Sterling
  • Holly Holm vs. Kayla Harrison
  • Bobby Green vs. Jim Miller
  • Sodiq Yusuff vs. Diego Lopes
  • Bo Nickal vs. Cody Brundage
  • Jessica Andrade vs. Marina Rodriguez
  • Deiveson Figueiredo vs. Cody Garbrandt