‘You Cannot Defend 3 Titles’- Israel Adesanya Gets a Stern Warning From Aleksandar Rakic

Published 03/04/2021, 4:30 AM EST
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 07: Israel Adesanya of Nigeria celebrates after defeating Yoel Romero of Cuba in their UFC middleweight championship fight during the UFC 248 event at T-Mobile Arena on March 07, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


Aleksandar Rakic will fight Thiago Santos in an intriguing clash at the light-heavyweight division to start off the main card of the UFC 259 pay-per-view. The much-anticipated main event will see 205lbs champion, Jan Blachowicz, make his first title defense against middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya.

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‘Stylebender’ will look to make history by becoming a simultaneous two-division champion. However, the 185lbs champion has also expressed his desire to fight for the heavyweight belt as he wants to achieve an unprecedented 3-division UFC champion status.

At the UFC 259 media-day, Rakic was asked what would happen if Adesanya shifted to heavyweight after winning this weekend. The fighter suggested that the UFC should introduce an interim belt for the light-heavyweight division if Izzy wins.

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They should put an interim title as soon as possible then. Because you cannot defend three titles. You cannot defend a middleweight, light heavyweight, and then go in for the heavyweight. There are guys waiting, you know, for our shot. This would be disrespectful for us,” said Rakic.

Rocket‘ is coming off a win against former title challenger, Anthony Smith, in his last contest. He faces another former contender in ‘Marreta’ this weekend.

Aleksandar Rakic vs Thiago Santos: Fireworks await?

Rakic and Santos are both knockout artists. Rakic has 9 T/KO finishes on his resume, and his scary knockout of Jimi Manuwa is still fresh among MMA fans. Santos on the other hand has 15 wins by T/KO and is an entertainer like no one else.

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‘Maretta’ is currently on a 2-fight skid. Glover Teixeira handed him a submission loss last term after he dropped a split decision against Jon Jones at UFC 239. The Brazilian is keen to fight for the belt again and a win this weekend will set him up for a potential contender fight next.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – AUGUST 29: (R-L) Aleksandar Rakic of Austria punches Anthony Smith in their light heavyweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on August 29, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Rakic, too, will look to fight for the belt soon. He has had a promising start to his UFC career and has put together a 5-1 record. A split decision loss against Volkan Oezdemir has been his only promotional setback. Hence, a win at UFC 259 may give him the chance to fight for a contender spot, or maybe even for the interim belt.

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What did you make of Aleksandar Rakic’s comments on Israel Adesanya? Let us know your thoughts.

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Apratim Banerjee

686 articles

Apratim Banerjee is an MMA author for EssentiallySports and has been writing professionally for almost a year. Before his current gig, Apratim worked as a UFC writer for Sportskeeda. A long-time MMA fan, Apratim has developed a critical eye for the sport that has helped him transfer his vast knowledge to his copies and give hardcore and casual readers a detailed insight into the fights and fighters.

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