MMA legend Demetrious Johnson doesn’t think Israel Adesanya is ready to fight Dricus Du Plessis: “I don’t like that fight for Izzy”

By Fernando Quiles - February 21, 2024

Demetrious Johnson thinks Israel Adesanya needs more time to prepare for Dricus Du Plessis.

Israel Adesanya

There has long been bad blood between Adesanya and the current UFC middleweight champion Dricus Du Plessis. While such a fight figures to be quite lucrative, “Mighty Mouse” doesn’t believe now is the time for “The Last Stylebender” to jump into a title fight with “Stillknocks.”

Instead, Johnson has offered some advice for Adesanya.


Demetrious Johnson Thinks Israel Adesanya Should Prepare More Before Fighting Dricus Du Plessis

During an appearance on‘s “The MMA Hour,” Demetrious Johnson admitted that he doesn’t think Israel Adesanya is ready for Dricus Du Plessis.

“I don’t like that fight for Izzy, because I feel Izzy hasn’t taken enough time,” Johnson said Wednesday on The MMA Hour.

Johnson went on to say there’s a serious question that must be asked within the Adesanya camp if they expect the former two-time UFC middleweight champion to defeat Du Plessis.

“My question to Izzy would be, ‘Izzy, have you taken the time to add more tools to your toolset,’ because if I was looking at that fight right now, strategically, one of the things Izzy likes to do, he likes to back up,” Johnson said. “He likes to counter a punch. So if he likes to counter a punch, DDP does a good job of not overextending. He doesn’t back up. He usually takes the center of the cage and he moves forward, and goes to the center and he goes either southpaw or orthodox.

“So for me, if I was in Izzy’s camp, I’d be like, ‘Hey Izzy, we’re working on your clinch game, we’re working on your wrestling game, we’re working those two things, because if somebody doesn’t overextend, or come toward you, then I want you to feel comfortable enough to come forward, and if you go back and watch Izzy’s kickboxing – and woo, somebody posted a clip, and damn, that s*** looked beautiful – if I can take that kickboxing of Izzy, the pressure fighter going forward and give him a nasty clinch and a double-leg, he would be the middleweight champion. He would defeat my 11 consecutive title defenses, because his countering, his athletic ability, his strengths of countering people are phenomenal. But if somebody doesn’t overextend, is he comfortable enough to go in there and force the clinch, force the wrestling, force those things, and then when he beats him up there, he goes back to his countering, and the countering becomes a lot easier.”

Adesanya’s coach Eugene Bareman recently told the media that his fighter is pretty much out of the hiatus phase. He expects “Izzy” to return to pre-hiatus shape within a month or so. Who Adesanya will meet upon his return to the Octagon remains to be seen.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


Dricus du Plessis Israel Adesanya UFC