UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker and interim champ Israel Adesanya squared off Wednesday at the UFC 243 pre-fight press conference.
As you can expect, it was a tense staredown between the world’s top two middleweights. Check out the video below.
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) August 15, 2019
Whittaker said nothing, while Adesanya chirped him a bit, although it wasn’t possible to hear what he said. You can also see at some point Adesanya licking his lips.
Whittaker (20-4) won TUF Smashes back in 2012 and has parlayed that into a brilliant UFC career. He opened up his Octagon run as a welterweight, but only went 3-2 at 170lbs before deciding to move up to 185lbs. Since moving up to middleweight, Whittaker has transformed into one of the greatest fighters on the UFC roster. He is currently on an unbeaten nine-fight win streak at 185lbs, with two decision wins over Yoel Romero, a KO win over Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, not to mention victories over Uriah Hall and Derek Brunson. He became the undisputed champion when Georges St-Pierre retired.
Adesanya (17-0) made his UFC debut in February 2018 and has quickly become one of the promotion’s biggest stars. He’s a perfect 6-0 so far inside the Octagon, including a “Fight of the Year” decision win in his last outing over Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 236 to become the interim middleweight champ. He also holds a notable win over former middleweight champion Anderson Silva from earlier this year.
UFC 243 takes place October 6 at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Australia. Whittaker vs. Adesanya is expected to sell out the arena as many believe it’s the biggest fight in the history of Oceania. The promotion also recently added a lightweight bout between Dan Hooker and Al Iaquinta to help beef up the undercard. Plus, Holly Holm returns to fight Raquel Pennington in a women’s bantamweight rematch.
On a scale of 1-10, how excited are you for Robert Whittaker vs. Israel Adesanya?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 8/15/2019.