Rich Franklin says Israel Adesanya is currently ranked 3rd for greatest middleweight of all time

By Fernando Quiles - May 4, 2023

UFC Hall of Famer Rich Franklin doesn’t think Israel Adesanya can lay claim to being the best, or even second-best, middleweight of all time.

Rich Franklin Israel Adesanya

Adesanya is the reigning UFC Middleweight Champion. He’s a two-time 185-pound titleholder in the UFC, and he had five successful title defenses during his first run with the gold. He recaptured the UFC title in April, knocking out Alex Pereira, who had gone 3-0 against him in combat sports prior to “The Last Stylebender’s” huge victory.

Rich Franklin On Israel Adesanya’s All-Time Middleweight Ranking

During an interview with The Schmo, Rich Franklin discussed what made Anderson Silva so special during his prime (h/t Essentially Sports).

“Anderson [Silva] didn’t just win matches, he made good guys look bad, myself included.” He added, “You look at a match like what he did with Forrest [Griffin] and how he was able to outmaneuver him. I have yet to see that kind of level in the middleweight class with somebody else.”

On whether or not Israel Adesanya should be considered the best MMA middleweight of all time, Franklin made it clear that he doesn’t even think the current 185-pound titleholder takes the number two spot.

“Absolutely not. It’ll always be Anderson Silva,” Franklin said. “The reason why is because Anderson beat me. So I had to be beaten by the greatest, right? So Israel will always be… he will be number three. It’s Anderson, then me, then Israel.”

Adesanya continues to build his legacy under the UFC banner. He has a UFC record of 13-2, and his overall pro MMA record is an impressive 24-2. Franklin’s UFC record was 14-6, and he amassed an overall pro MMA record of 29-7, 1 NC.

Do you agree with Rich Franklin on Israel Adesanya’s place on the all-time list for MMA middleweights? Sound off in the comment section below.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


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