Israel Adesanya vows to make Sean Strickland his “b*tch” at UFC 293: “Behind the scenes he’s soft”

By Susan Cox - August 25, 2023

Israel Adesanya is vowing to make Sean Strickland his ‘b*tch’ at UFC 293.

Israel Adesanya, Sean Strickland

UFC 293 takes place on Saturday, September 9th at the Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia.

Headlining the event will be a middleweight title fight between Israel Adesanya (24-2 MMA) and Sean Strickland (27-5 MMA).

Initially it looked like Dricus Du Plessis (20-2 MMA) would be Adesanya’s next opponent, but that was not to be, and now ‘The Last Stylebender’ will be defending his title against ‘Tarzan’.

It took a bit for Adesanya to come to terms with the UFC brass and secure his fight this coming September.

Speaking with ‘MMA Junkie‘ in a facilitated interview, Adesanya spoke about the UFC:

“I didn’t think it strained the relationship (with UFC) at all. It was part of the negotiations. They listened to me when I put my case forward. Business is business. We handle business on this side, we just keep it under wraps. We keep it in-house. Families fight sometimes. Things happen. Friends fight and you come together and make it work. We got the job done in the end.”

As far as his upcoming opponent, Strickland, Adesanya shared:

“I don’t care about what people think, even though, yes, people do think I’m going to blow through this guy. Rightfully so. Cause I will. He’s not an easy fight, but I’ll just make it look easy. He’s a hard fight, but I’ll make it look easy. I’ve made a lot of hard men look easy. Easy work. This will be no different.”

Continuing, Israel Adesanya shared his thoughts on the 32-year-old:

“Behind the scenes, when it’s just me and him, I’ve been the locker room with him – I’ve been backstage – even last time I saw him in Vegas I smacked him in the dick. Behind the scenes, then his public persona, people think he’s this guy. ‘He’s crazy.’ Behind the scenes he’s soft. I’m soft. I won’t even call him soft. That’s actually an insult to soft people. He’s like that idiot in the back of the class who just wants to talk, and talk over you to get his point across. Nothing in particular he’s said has gotten to me, just anytime he breathes he says some idiotic things. I kind of want to show people what happens backstage, I want to show them on the main stage, that he’s my b*tch.

“I’m a loud man when I need to be loud, but I’m very quiet and I observe. He definitely has his own insecurities and whatnot, like, ‘I’m a man and I ride a motorcycle and wear my boots and drink my beer.’ He wants to be that guy and macho, machismo. I don’t need to prove I’m a man by doing all that sh*t. I just be me, and I’ll still f*ck you up.”

Israel Adesanya has had previous encounters outside the ring with Sean Strickland, but says it’s now ‘all about the fight’:

“I’m not worried about the press conference. I’m worried about the fight. He’s worried about the press conference, cause that’s where he thinks he’s going to shine. Last time he just caught me off guard because I wasn’t expecting to go back-and-forth with him. I also hated the fact he was sitting behind me like a retarded kid in class. I’m looking forward to the fight because that’s where it counts. I don’t give a f*ck about a press conference, but I’ve got some bars for him as well.”

As far as Adesanya’s prediction for the outcome on Saturday, September 9th, he concluded with:

“I’m on a warpath, and I’m going to end this man. He’s getting knocked out. He’s getting knocked out in this fight. But I believe his team will really try to get him to wrestle or clinch with me. He’ll get dumped on his ass and knocked out again. I don’t take him lightly because a man with everything to gain and nothing to lose is a very dangerous man. I take him very seriously, but I just know who I am and where I’m at.”

Do you believe Israel Adesanya with KO Sean Strickland this coming September to retain the championship belt?

Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!


Israel Adesanya Sean Strickland UFC UFC 293