Like pretty much everybody else inside the MMA bubble, former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman has enjoyed watching new interim middleweight champ Israel Adesanya compete inside the Octagon. That being said, he believes he possesses the physical tools and the skills to give the Nigerian-born Kiwi fits inside the cage.
Weidman explains why he feels this way on the latest episode of Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show.
“Look, people were going nuts on Israel. He’s a very talented guy, he’s got great standup and now I know that he is super tough after that last fight,” Chris Weidman said (transcript via MMA News). “Before he fought Anderson Silva, he fought Derek Brunson, he fought Silva who is 44 and is known as a standup guy, which is a perfect matchup for him.
“It was a very close fight,” said Weidman. “At that point people were talking about him like he’s the next best thing, and at that point I just thought he was overrated and he hadn’t been able to prove himself yet. He hasn’t gone against a top wrestler, hadn’t fought guys in the top five.
“I just felt people were getting ahead of themselves. But that was it. I’m a fan of the guy, I like watching him fight and I would love to fight him. I think I’m a nightmare matchup for him if you look on paper, just based on the paper with my wrestling and my jiu-jitsu. With my size, I think I will be a real problem for him.”
How do you think Chris Weidman matches up with Israel Adesanya?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 4/23/2019.