Israel Adesanya believes a future rematch with Kelvin Gastelum is in the cards but shot down any idea of a second fight with Marvin Vettori.
Adesanya (20-0 MMA), who picked up a sensational TKO victory over the previously undefeated Paulo Costa in his most recent effort at UFC 253, recently sat down with MMAJunkie where he discussed the possibility of a future rematch with ‘The Eraser’.
The Brazilian powerhouse has demanded an immediate rematch with ‘Stylebender’, citing that “something happened” just prior to their event-headlining fight last month and thus his performance was impacted.
Israel Adesanya believes that Paulo Costa needs to take the loss and “let it go” and used his previous opponents in Kelvin Gastelum and Marvin Vettori as examples for two different ways to handle defeat.
“Let it go,” Adesanya said. “I’ll give you a classic example: There’s two teammates that I fought. Two teammates is the Italian (Vettori), and then there’s Kelvin Gastelum. The Italian, he ran up on me in Vegas one time smiling and he was like, ‘What’s up? What are you doing here?’ And I said, ‘I’m here for my boy (Alexander) Volkanovski’s fight.’ Then I had to tell him just shush, ‘When I told you guys I would come train with you (after our fight), it wasn’t about you or because I lost. I was just saying that to your coach because he’s a legendary coach.’ All I said was, ‘If I’m ever in the area, I’ll pop in.’ He holds onto that because that’s he way of believing that, ‘Yes, he admitted that I beat him and he wants to train with us,’ like some Eric Kaufmann (expletive).”
Israel Adesanya continued to rip on Marvin Vettori:
“But (Vettori) holds onto that because he knows, he knows deep down he’ll never see me again. He knows deep down he’ll never get a title shot. So that’s why he holds onto that as his own claim to victory when I smoked his ass in that fight. You might give him the third round, but I beat his ass easily in that fight, but he holds onto that.”
Israel Adesanya then used Kelvin Gastelum, who he had a “fight of the year” war with at UFC 236, as the perfect example of how to take a loss like a professional.
“Now, on the flip side, his teammate Kelvin Gastelum, who was ‘this close’ to winning in our famous UFC 236 title bout in Atlanta, was ‘this close.’ Then I dusted him and I widened the gap. All he does is give me respect. You know why? Because he believes he’s going to get there. He believes he’s going to get there again. That’s the tale of two teammates, one who holds on to his loss to me, because he knows for a fact he’ll never, ever see me again. And one who just hushes in silence in steady works. Kelvin Gastelum. Because he knows he’ll see me again. That’s the two different approaches.”
Who do you think is more likely to earn a future rematch with Israel Adesanya, Marvin Vettori or Kelvin Gastelum? Share your thoughts in the comments section PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on October 9, 2020