The most exciting moment out of UFC 276 last weekend was not the main event, but the walkout of UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya which was inspired by Pro Wrestling legend Mark Calaway aka “The Undertaker”, and after his fifth title defense, Adesanya elaborates the manoeuvre.
Adesanya headlined UFC 276 against Jared Cannonier with his Middleweight title on the line, and emerged victorious via unanimous decision. While the actual fight itself was lambasted by fans for being “boring”, it was Izzy’s walkout that set itself above from the rest of the fight night.
With one of the most iconic tunes in sports entertainment playing in the background, “The Last Stylebender” entered while donning a black wide brim hat, along with carrying an urn, exactly how “The Dead Man” entered arenas during his prime.
Adesanya’s entrance gathered massive appraisal, most significantly from Undertaker himself, who took to social media to commend the champion for his victory.
“The long walk many opponents know and fear … congrats @stylebender!” the retired wrestler tweeted.
— Undertaker (@undertaker) July 3, 2022
Calaway later also spoke about Adesanya’s walkout to Ariel Helwani, as well as recalling how the WBC Heavyweight world champion boxer Tyson Fury sat up like him after a knockdown from Deontay Wilder in their first fight back in 2018.
“I thought it was great! He’s [Adesanya] not only a great fighter, he’s an awesome entertainer as well! Tyson Fury gets knocked down & sits up like the UT and Adesanya uses my walkout! Pretty damn cool!” he said. [H/T MMA Junkie]
I had been feeling dark all week: Israel Adesanya
In the meantime, Adesanya himself has spoken up on making such an iconic entrance to his UFC 276 clash against Cannonier, revealing that he had listened to the theme songs of WWE wrestlers throughout the week and it was The Undertaker’s theme, titled “Rest in Peace” and created by the band It Lives, It Breathes, seemed perfect to him.
“I’m an artist. It just works… As I was sitting down feeling it on Tuesday, it just made sense. I said all week: This feels like WrestleMania. Who’s undefeated at WrestleMania? The Undertaker. And I had been feeling dark all week,” said Adesanya. [H/T MMA Junkie]
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