‘I’m Happy He Was There’- Israel Adesanya Teams Up With Legendary Surfer Kelly Slater

Published 12/07/2020, 1:13 PM EST
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 07: Israel Adesanya of Nigeria battles Yoel Romero (not pictured) 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)


UFC superstar and middleweight champion Israel Adesanya isn’t afraid to learn new things. The 185-pound champion recently defended his title against Brazilian Paulo Costa at UFC 253 in September. He is now enjoying his well earned time off in California.

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Stylebender certainly loves to challenge himself. This can be further proven as Adesanya went out of his way to get himself a fight against Yoel Romero. The result aside, MMA fans do not see people call out a physical specimen such as the Cuban every day.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – SEPTEMBER 27: Israel Adesanya of Nigerian is interviewed after defeating Paulo Costa of Brazil in their middleweight championship bout during UFC 253 inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on September 27, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

Surfing with Kelly Slater

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Adesanya took to social media to post an image of him and American pro surfer Kelly Slater. He wrote, “I learnt a lot today just by observing a master at work this evening.

“Already in the three sessions, I’ve had surfing I’ve realized it’s not as easy as guys like him make it look. I’m happy he was there to witness me catching my first wave 🌊

“There’s something about sitting on a surfboard in the ocean and looking at the sunset as your boys surf in the background. #whatalife”

Kelly Slater is regarded as one of the greatest surfers of all time. He has an unprecedented record of 11 World Titles and 55 career victories. Slater is also the youngest and oldest World Champion in men’s history.

Slater had a back and forth over social media with middleweight contender Paulo Costa. He had accused Costa’s physique of looking ‘suspect’, writing on an official UFC Instagram post. Costa didn’t take too kindly to Slater’s comments saying ‘he talks too much’.

Israel Adesanya on commentary

Adesanya was recently part of the broadcast commentary team for the Mike Tyson vs Roy Jones Jr fight. He teamed up with the likes of all-time great boxer ‘Sugar’ Ray Leonard, Mauro Ranallo, and Grammy-winning rap legend Snoop Dogg in the booth. 

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‘Izzy’ held his own in his first-ever appearance as a commentator at a major event. Twitterati was so impressed with Adesanya’s performance as he used his wit and gift of gab to light up the boxing community.

Although Adesanya was expected to fly out to train for his rumored fight for the UFC light heavyweight title. A win at light heavyweight would put Stylebender in an esteemed list of Champ-Champ’s. This list includes Conor McGregor, Amanda Nunes, and Daniel Cormier.

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DIVE DEEPER

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Keith Dsouza

193 articles

Keith D'Souza is part of the Essentially Sports MMA writing team. Having followed the sport since 2013, some of his favorite fighters include Max Holloway, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor, and Johny Hendricks. Keith also runs PureMMAIndia, a brand that promotes MMA over social media which aims at growing the sport in India.

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