“People Forget About My Kickboxing” – Israel Adesanya on Fighting in a Smaller Cage

Published 09/17/2020, 12:27 PM EDT


Israel Adesanya and Paulo Costa are set for a collision at UFC 253. The two middleweight athletes will fight for the middleweight belt in Abu Dhabi on September 26. Both men have not tasted defeat in their professional careers yet. 

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Adesanya (8-0 in the UFC) will defend his title for the second time. His opponent, Paulo Costa, (5-0 in the UFC) has only gone the distance once. His last fight against Yoel Romero was the only fight that went to a decision. 

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Costa and Adesanya dislike each other. Both have never missed an opportunity to poke fun at the other man. Costa has said that “Israel Adesanya is the most shameful champion ever,” while “Izzy” has accused the Brazilian of using performance-enhancing drugs.

Heading into the bout, the pair will fight in a bigger cage as they will compete in Abu Dhabi. The cage used for fights at the apex is smaller. For some fighters, this has been a blessing and others, a curse.

Cage size does not matter for Israel Adesanya

In a recent interview with Ariel Helwani, Adesanya was asked about his thoughts on fighting in a bigger cage.

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I don’t care. It boggles me how it’s actually a factor in people’s minds. People keep forgetting about my kickboxing world title fight in a small a** ring with corners.

“I was still able to fight a guy who was walking me down throwing leg kicks and big hooks and stuff. I was able to use footwork to get around him and do my stuff,” Israel Adesanya told Ariel Helwani.

Look at [Brad] Tavares. When I fought him, that was a small cage. I don’t really think it makes a difference if you know what you’re doing with your feet,” Adesanya added.

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Do you think a smaller cage affects the fight significantly?

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Kevin Binoy

836 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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