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No regrets, I’ll rise again, Israel Adesanya vows

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PHOTO: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports


‘You can never hurt somebody for thinking big, trying to become great’

Israel Adesanya suffered the first loss of his MMA career at UFC 259 on Sunday night, but he is not deterred by the setback.

‘The Last Stylebender,’ who entered his light-heavyweight title bout with Jan Blachowicz on the back of 20 consecutive wins, was a considerable favourite to dethrone the 205lb champion and pick up his second UFC belt.

According to lowkickmma.com, Adesanya expressed his disappointment at the post-fight press conference, saying,: “Losses are part of life. Losses are something I deal with occasionally.

“Just this is my first one in MMA. As I say, it is what it is. If I was going to lose to anyone, what better guy to lose to than a guy like Jan?

“(He’s) a classy champion, a cool dude, a very nice guy – a guy who has a great story in himself. ‘Stylebender’ understood the risk he was taking by stepping up to light-heavyweight and insists he has no regrets despite losing.

“(I have) no regrets,” Adesanya said. “Like I said, I don’t know. I feel like the boxing model has made it a bad thing to lose. Yeah, it sucks losing. Don’t get me wrong. But it’s not like the end of the world. Like I said, I’ve lost before in the past. … Right now, me and my team, we’re just excited to get home and work on certain little details.”

Adesanya is of the opinion some minor changes to his UFC 259 gameplan would’ve seen him walk away the winner. He said he would return to New Zealand and focus on his comeback.

“I represented my team very well. Now we go back to the drawing board. It’s kind of fun. Like, I look forward to like, this is the dip in my story. (Do) you know what I mean? This is the valley, if you will. Then, I’ll rise again like the phoenix that I am.”

Meanwhile, UFC president, Dana White, has hinted that Adesanya will go back to continue dominating the middleweight division, adding that he is sure the New Zealand-based Nigerian would soon bounce back.

“Listen he’s the middleweight champ. He doesn’t get the light heavyweight title.”

He doesn’t get to fight Jon Jones,” White said. “But you know what, you can never hurt somebody for thinking big and trying to become great. You know he gave it a shot tonight and it didn’t happen. Jan is the man. He is the 205lbs champ and now he starts taking on all comers in that weight division.”

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