Israel Adesanya is a Nigerian mixed martial artist, former professional boxer as well as a former professional Kick-boxer. He was born and bred in Lagos, Nigeria. His family often migrated from one country to another. Thus, he spent a few years of his life growing up in Ghana before finally moving to and settling in New Zealand. He is nicknamed “The Last Stylebender” because of his love for Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Even as a child, the Nigerian was highly interested in martial arts and started training in Taekwondo at a very young age. However, his interest in martial arts somewhat faded away a bit with time. Israel had dreams of becoming a dancer but he was highly inspired by Tony Jaa starrer, Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior. This led him to turn his attention back towards martial arts and he began training in Muay Thai. He began fighting in 2008 and then moved to Auckland in 2010 to kick-start his Kickboxing career at City Kickboxing.
It’s safe to say that the Nigerian’s kickboxing career has been really successful so far. He holds a Kickboxing record of 50-5-2. He first went on a winning spree in New Zealand and ended up clearing out the entire division. He initially went undefeated for 32 fights. He then moved to China to live and fight in Kunlun Fight. He lost his first Kickboxing fight to Simon Marcus in 2014. However, Israel managed to get back to winning ways soon and later signed on for Glory. He is currently ranked the #6 Middleweight in the world by CombatPress.
Adesanya has also competed in six professional bouts and has been victorious in five of those. He started his MMA career in 2012 against James Griffiths. He won the AFC Middleweight title against Melvin Guillard at AFC 20 and later defended his title against Stuart Dare.
The Nigerian has phenomenal striking skills and is a proven knock-out artist having won all his MMA fights via KO. He has finally made his way to the octagon and will be facing Rob Wilkinson at UFC 221. He is still young, undefeated and still has a long way to go. He certainly has all the tools to become a huge superstar and is one of the fighters everyone should keep an eye out for.
Below is a video proving how skillful Adesanya can be: