Veteran Brad Tavares (17-4 MMA, 12-4) who gets his first headliner takes on prospect Israel Adesanya (12-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) at TUF 27 Finale on July 6 as a part of International Fight Week.
The bout was scheduled on the basis of bad blood between the two fighters and that has continued ever since. Tavares feels Adesanya does not deserve to headline the event with only two UFC fights under his belt however ‘The Style Bender’ believes Tavares has got the main event spot because of him.
“Be honest: If not for me, he wouldn’t be here,” Adesanya told reporters, including MMAjunkie, ahead of Friday’s The Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale. “He’s in the red corner because he’s ranked higher or whatever. But rankings is just opinions anyway, so I don’t care about them. He’s only here because of me. I might be blue corner, but I’m the A-side of this.”
Adesanya faced some criticism for his foul mouthed post-fight interview after his victory at UFC 221. This time however Adesanya plans to let his performance speak for itself by taking out the tuff Hawaiian.
“Last time, I pissed all over the cage. It hit on someone’s grave, blah blah blah, but this time, I really want to show out,” Adesanya said. “I feel like I’m going to need less than three rounds – two rounds. He’s one of those guys – you watch him when he fought Whittaker. The way Whittaker struck him was a little bit clumsy, but it was clean. Because Whittaker sometimes throws himself over the shots, over the center, off-balance. I’m not like that.
“I’ve done that in the past, and I’ve learned from it. He’s one of these guys, like I’ll hit him enough times within the first 30 seconds, minute, and he’ll be like, ‘Oh (expletive), all right. Takedowns.’ And then sloppy, panic-shooting and panic-striking. You can see it every single time.
“If it doesn’t happen in the first, I get more comfortable as the fight goes so. So, yeah, second or third round. But I just don’t see this fight going five rounds. Five rounds is too much. I’m finishing him.”