We are just a month removed from UFC 293 where we saw Sean Strickland (28-5) shock the world by completely dominating and dethroning former middleweight champion Israel Adesanya (24-3). The Last Stylebender hasn’t been heard from much since his loss and he hasn’t really detailed his fighting future following the loss.
Well, he opened up about his fighting future while being a guest on The Rock Podcast. Adesanya said that after being one of the more active fighters in the promotion, he’s going to take an extended leave. He didn’t say how long he’d be gone, but he made it clear that he wouldn’t be fighting for a while.
The former UFC champion said, “Now I’m going to take time to look after myself, and I’m not going to fight for a long time. I’m definitely not going to retire because I know me – I’m not leaving like that. I know me. But if I did, I’m fine. I don’t need to prove anything else. But I know what I can do and what I can change in my lifestyle to make my body adapt to where I need to be. I’m going to heal myself up. You won’t see me fight for a long time.”
When will the former UFC champion return?
I don’t think people truly appreciate how active Israel Adesanya has been for the UFC. Since making his debut at the beginning of 2018, Adesanya has made 16 appearances inside the octagon. Averaging just more than three fights a year.
Since April 2019, Adesanya has fought in 11 title fights. We hear about champions wanting to be active, however, Adesanya is the living and breathing example of a champion who was active. Now that he’s lost his title it’s given him the opportunity to take a step back and become hungry again while letting his body heal.
So, when should UFC fans expect Adesanya to come back? Adesanya’s version of a long time and others might be very different. Considering how Adesanya operates, I’d say that by late next summer or fall, you’ll see him pop back up. My guess it that he’ll take close to a year off before making the walk again.