The highly anticipated UFC middleweight title fight rematch between Israel Adesanya and Robert Whittaker has reportedly been pushed back until 2022.
Dana White and company were originally looking to book Adesanya vs. Whittaker 2 for the main event of UFC 268 on November 6 at Madision Square Garden in New York. However, the States new pandemic-related restrictions have forced the promotion to make a change of plans.
Whittaker’s manager Titus Day recently spoke with the Daily Telegraph where he shared the following disappointing news.
“Rob had been told he would be fighting at Madison Square Garden,” Day told the publication (h/t MMAFighting). “But there have been some issues since and it can’t happen. Apparently, Adesanya could get into America for the fight, but he wouldn’t have been able to get back to New Zealand immediately afterwards [due to travel restrictions]. So while we know the fight is going to happen, it’s now become a matter of when. Unfortunately, given everything going on with COVID in Australia and New Zealand at the moment, it may not be until early next year.”
Robert Whittaker (23-5 MMA) and Israel Adesanya (21-1 MMA) originally squared off for the promotions undisputed middleweight title in October of 2019, with ‘Stylebender’ emerging victorious by way of second round knockout.
Whittaker has gone 3-0 since his loss to ‘Stylebender’, scoring decision victories over perennial contenders Darren Till, Jared Cannonier and Kevlin Gastelum during that stretch.
Meanwhile, Israel Adesanya returned to the win column back in June by defending his middleweight title with a unanimous decision victory over Marvin Vettori. That win was preceded by a loss to reigning UFC light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz, a defeat which served as the first of Adesanya’s MMA career.
Who do you think will emerge victorious when Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya eventually clash for a second time? Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!