Former UFC middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya, has said if the referee had not stopped the match, he would have retained his belt.
Adesanya slipped in the middle of the octagon before retreating to the face where Pereira capitalized on his lack of balance to knock him out.

Adesanya was up on the scorecards three rounds to one.

“I was fine. First thing I said to the referee was that I was fine, I was still lucid. But yeah, sh*t happens,” the Nigerian-New Zealander told reporters in the post-fight press conference.

“Well, I talked to my coaches and I trust them. But I was fine, my eyes might have rolled back a little bit but I was lucid.

“My ego would say at least let me go out on my shield but I don’t think I would have gone out because I was still there. He might have gone on to win that round but I would still be champion.”

Adesanya responded positively to talks of a rematch, “Of course, this is my third fight in 10 months. Every time I fight, I risked losing (the belt). I put it on the line because I am not trying to do it just once and this is what happens, but again, dare to be great, and I am.

“Right now, I am just focused on rehydrating and doing the obligations.”

Adesanya doesn’t think a potential rematch would be more challenging than the fight at the Garden.

“No, I know what he can do. He hit my peroneal nerve so that’s where my footwork was compromised. Kudos to him for investing in those calf kicks because it really paid off.

“Like the Wolf of Wall Street, I’m still here, I’m not f*cking leaving. It’s not over.”

Leave a reply

You may also like