‘He’s Still a Middleweight’- Alexander Volkanovski Says Jan Blachowicz Was Too Heavy for Israel Adesanya

Published 03/17/2021, 6:30 AM EDT


Alexander Volkanovski is set to defend his featherweight belt for the second time next week against Brian Ortega. During normal fight camps, Volkanovski splits his training camp between Australia, where he trains under his longtime coach Joe Lopez.

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He finishes his training camp off in New Zealand where he trains at City Kickboxing Gym, Eugene Bareman alongside the likes of Israel Adesanya, and Kai Kara France, among others. 

However, this time around, Volkanovski has not been able to visit New Zealand to finish his training camp owing to the restrictions placed due to the coronavirus. Three of his teammates from CKB recently fought at UFC 259, but only one of the three fighters was able to secure a win. 

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Most notable of the three, Israel Adesanya fell short against Jan Blachowicz as he attempted to become only the 5th simultaneous two-division world champion. 

Read: Henry Cejudo calls out former featherweight champion Max Holloway 

Alexander Volkanovski feels Israel Adesanya is not a big middleweight  

In a recent interview, Kacper Rosolowski asked Volkanovski what he made of the main event between ‘Izzy’ and Blachowicz.

He said, “Yeah look man, it’s the fight game. It was always going to be a big ask moving up… He was vocal about not putting on muscle. He’s still a middleweight, not that big of a middleweight, too, to be quite honest. And still stepped up.”

The featherweight champion continued, “So good on him for taking that challenge. But you obviously seen once Jan was on top of him, then it was a bit harder for him to get up. I still thought he was doing good…. He was doing well on the feet. He stopped a couple of takedowns early…. I felt like that was going to tire Jan even more…. Good on Jan, obviously he did a good job and showed that polish power double”

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Volkanovski also has a tough test ahead of him in ‘T-City’. The champion usually averages 2.09 takedowns per 15 minutes. However, against a skilled Jiu-Jitsu practitioner such as Ortega, takedowns might not be the most effective tool. But the challenger is also an excellent striker, and his skills were on display against ‘The Korean Zombie’ Chan Sung Jung. 

Given his opponent’s newly found skills and momentum, it will be a tough fight for ‘The Great’.  

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Who will you be supporting in the featherweight title fight at UFC 260? Let us know in the comments below!

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Kevin Binoy

823 articles

Kevin Binoy is an MMA author at EssentiallySports. He earned a Bachelor's degree from Fergusson College and has been covering sports professionally for over two years. Besides working with the MMA writing team, Kevin is a core member of the organization's web stories team and is responsible for delivering engaging MMA web stories.

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