Michael Bisping, like most folks, has been impressed with what he’s seen from Israel Adesanya. But…apparently, the former UFC champ believes he would have a pretty easy time getting past “The Last Stylebender”.
Adesanya has been on the radar of hardcore, combat sports fans for some time now, on account of his 75-5-1 run in pro-kickboxing. The hype continued to build for the vaunted striker after he started winning MMA fights, and of course, now he’s regarded as one of the game’s fastest rising stars, thanks to his 4-0 run in the UFC.
Well, recently it was announced that Adesanya is going to fight the legendary Anderson Silva on February 10th at UFC 234. During the latest “Believe You Me” podcast Bisping go to talking about that match-up, and while doing so, he said the following about Adesanya (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“I like Israel Adesanya but I’ll tell you something, if there’s one person if you asked me who I want to fight right now, it would be Israel,” Bisping said. “When I look at him – listen, he’s good, he’s great, but I’m sorry, I’m not buying it. I’m not saying I’m not impressed. I’m on the hype train. He’s good, he’s beating people. He’s beating the Marvin Vettoris of the world. He had a good win against Derek Brunson but Derek Brunson looked like sh*t. He was terrified.
“I think I would have an easy time with him. Just saying, just throwing it out there.”
“He fought Derek Brunson and I thought Derek Brunson was going to give him a hard time but he made easy work of him,” Bisping concluded. “But Derek Brunson looked like sh*t. So now he’s fighting Anderson Silva and if he beats him – and it’s not fair to Israel – people will say, ‘Yeah, but he beat a 43-year-old Anderson Silva.’ It is a tricky one and it’s kind of a lose-lose because if beats him, he’ll get that, and if he loses, he got beat by a 43-year-old Anderson Silva…”
How about that huh? Now, chances are Bisping’s going to receive some flack for the comments about having an “easy time with him”. Does he truly believe he would cruise through Adesanya? Considering Bisping turns 40 next February? Hard to say.
But, there are still some folks out there who believe Adesanya hasn’t really been fully vetted just yet. Sure, he did take out Brunson and showcased some solid takedown defense in that fight. So, Adesanya definitely answered some questions in that bout. But, as Bisping alluded to, Adesanya is expected to beat Silva, so questions will likely remain regarding his championship viability.