After Derek Brunson called out Israel Adesanya following his main event win at UFC Fight Night on Saturday, the UFC middleweight champion has responded.
Adesanya took to Twitter to answer Brunson's request for a title shot (note: contains profanity):
Brunson submitted Darren Till on Saturday night in the third round with a rear-naked choke. He looked into the television cameras immediately after the win, telling Adesanya "you're next."
ESPN's Brett Okamoto noted before the bout that Till winning and setting himself up for a title shot would have been big for UFC from a financial standpoint.
"Till, of Liverpool, England, is one of the most popular figures in the sport, and a potential championship fight between him and Adesanya would be a huge draw for the UFC," Okamoto wrote.
Instead, Brunson put himself in the conversation for a title shot. He does have a loss to Adesanya on his resume but has won his last five fights since that November 2018 bout.
Before a potential bout with Brunson, Adesanya seems likely to take on Robert Whittaker in a rematch of their middleweight title fight at UFC 243. The match was expected to take place later this year, but Whittaker’s manager, Titus Day, recently told Nick Walshaw of the Daily Telegraph it will likely be pushed into 2022 due to travel issues.
“Rob had been told he would be fighting at Madison Square Garden,” Day said. “But there have been some issues since and it can’t happen. Apparently, Adesanya could get into America for the fight, but he wouldn’t have been able to get back to NZ immediately afterwards (because of quarantine restrictions)."
Adesanya has established himself as the king of UFC's middleweight division and one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world. The Last Stylebender has a 21-1 career record with his lone defeat coming in the light heavyweight division against Jan Błachowicz.