Top UFC middleweight prospect and arguably the number 1 contender for the belt currently, Israel Adesanya believes that the UFC should strip the current UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker.
In a recent interview given to MMA Junkie Radio, Adesanya stated that he feels Whittaker’s situation is somewhat similar to that of former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and that just like Cruz Whittaker too gets injured for long periods of time quite often. He also further stated that he should then fight for a vacant title belt against Kelvin Gastelum. Thus, the UFC should strip Whittaker off the belt like the stripped Cruz before. Here’s what he had to say:
Honestly, you know when Dominick Cruz kept hurting himself and got surgery after surgery after surgery? The UFC stripped him, and this is another one of those. This isn’t the first time this has happened or second time with Robert. This is ongoing. He’s hurt, he’s out for much longer and he’s hurt again, then has a fight and is out for this long. You can’t hold up the whole division. My idea is strip him, take the belt off him, and me and Kelvin fight for the real belt. Then when he’s all healed up and 100 percent, he can come see me and challenge for the belt.
I understand in his position, but he’s going to be the No. 1 (contender) no matter happens in the (Paulo) Costa vs. (Yoel) Romero fight, no matter what happens with ‘Jacare’ (Souza) or (Luke) Rockhold or whoever, Robert Whittaker will be the No. 1 contender. He can come see me when he’s healthy. If you’re that confident you can beat me, you’re that confident you can get it back, it shouldn’t be a problem.