Israel Adesanya has stressed that should a potential showdown with former two-time UFC light heavyweight champion, Jon Jones elude him, it would not affect his legacy, however, he insists that he still most definitely wants to share the Octagon with the former champion.
Adesanya, the current undisputed middleweight champion, successfully scored the fourth defense of his reign last month in the main event of UFC 271 – landing a second career win over former undisputed titleholder, Robert Whittaker in the pair’s title rematch.
In the time since, Adesanya, who boasts a 22-1 professional record, has welcomed a title fight against the impressive Jared Cannonier next, and suggested both June or July returns to the Octagon to meet with the Texan contender.
Despite his continued dominance at the midleweight limit, a light heavyweight title has also eluded Adesanya in his one time of trying – dropping his first professional mixed martial arts at the weight limit last March in a unanimous decision defeat to then-champion, Jan Blachowicz.
Paired with his continued clearance of the middleweight division, as well as his intentions to renew interest in a light heavyweight excursion, Adesanya insists he still has a future at 205lbs – and would like to meet Jones at the weight division in the future.
“I don’t need it (a fight with Jon Jones), but I do want it,” Israel Adesanya said during an interview with TMZ. “I don’t need it, though, that’s the thing. People think I need that for my legacy. Nah, I’m good where I’m at.”
“I like light heavyweight. That’s where he (Jon Jones) was dominant,” Israel Adesanya said. “So I really want to be at light heavyweight.” (Transcribed by MMA Junkie)
Rumblings of a showdown between Adesanya and Jones have been rife ever since the former assumed the undisputed middleweight throne in late 2019, however, Jones’ vacating of the light heavyweight title in August of the following year in search of a heavyweight division move have put the kibosh on any matchup for the time being.
Still yet to feature at the heavyweight limit, Jones has been out of action since February 2020 where he successfully landed the last defense of his second reign as UFC light heavyweight titleholder with a close unanimous decision win over Dominick Reyes.