Israel Adesanya says he’s sticking by his word and won’t fight Kamaru Usman.
Adesanya and Usman have both said in the past they won’t fight another as they want as many African champions in the UFC as possible. However, just recently, Usman’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz said he wants to see the fight happen.
“I want him to beat Leon Edwards and then I want him to go fight Israel Adesanya for the middleweight title,” Abdelaziz said. “Listen, these guys, they’re cool but I don’t think they’re best friends. If there is enough money for both of them to fight, they will fight in the parking lot. I know how people work. This has nothing to do with loyalty, because these guys, it’s not like they’re training partners or brothers.
“They’re African brothers and that holds a lot of value… but at the end of the day, I’m Kamaru Usman’s team all the way,” Abdelaziz continued about Adesanya-Usman. “I want to see Kamaru Usman, before the end of the road, have two titles. I’m selfish, I’m greedy, and I think Kamaru deserves it… I think there is enough money for these two guys that (they) would fight. I want to see this fight now. I think fans want it, I want it. I think these two men need to call each other.”
Adesanya on why an Usman bout doesn't interest him: "It's bigger than money, it's just about legacy, I'm still looking to capture that image of me, Kamaru and Francis as the three kings, because we haven't done that yet together"
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) February 9, 2022
“Kamaru can speak for himself and he has, and I’ve spoken for myself and we said we wouldn’t fight each other. For me personally, it’s bigger than money,” Adesanya said to TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter. “Also, I have nothing to gain. It’s the guy coming up from a lower-weight class that looks to challenge himself that’s almost the protagonist of the story. That gets to rise to the occasion and that’s cool, but Kamaru’s not interested.
“Ali is just greedy. He sees dollar signs, but I’m like you can make that money elsewhere. But he’s just super greedy and for me, it’s bigger than money,” Adesanya said. “If I was gonna do this sh*t for money and retire, I would have retired three fights ago. I’m set, but nah, it’s bigger than money. It’s just about legacy, I’m still looking to capture that image of me, Kamaru, and Francis as the three kings as we haven’t done that together… It’s bigger than money, it’s bigger than that.”
As long as Adesanya remains the middleweight champ it seems unlikely that Usman will move up and fight him. He will also have to keep defending his welterweight belt which will likely happen in the summer against Leon Edwards.
Do you think we will ever see Israel Adesanya and Kamaru Usman fight one another?This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM