"Every upset in sport feels the way this fight feels" - Chael Sonnen on fans counting Jared Cannonier out against Israel Adesanya

Chael Sonnen (left), Jared Cannonier (center), Israel Adesanya (right)
Chael Sonnen (left), Jared Cannonier (center), Israel Adesanya (right)
Will Miles

Chael Sonnen believes there could be an upset on the cards when Israel Adesanya defends his middleweight title against Jared Cannonier.

Sonnen admitted that although he feels 'Izzy' is better, everyone counting out 'The Killa Gorilla' could mean there is a shocking result on the horizon.

'The American Gangster' feels that when someone is completely ruled out of a bout, upsets happen. In a recent interview with 'The Schmo', Sonnen explained that all the biggest upsets in sports have had this type of feeling going into them:

"Cannonier's a pain in the ass. He really is. He's gonna stay in the fight. He's not gonna beat himself when a lot of guys do. Adesanya stays in there for all 25 minutes. I can all but predict for you that Cannonier's going to lose the first round. But Cannonier does come on. I think a lot of people are counting him out. I think he's kept a very cool head. There's something about this. While Adesanya is better, there is something about this that every upset in sport feels the way this fight feels. If Adesanya is not fully engaged in this, it's a hard night out. Cannonier is the No.1 contender for a reason, he's damn good."

A fight that most fans knew was coming but seemingly took an age to be confirmed, Israel Adesanya will face Jared Cannonier at UFC 276 in July. Both men had verbally agreed to the bout months ago.

Adesanya (22-1) remains undefeated in the middleweight division. His only loss came when 'The Last Stylebender' took the step up to light heavyweight to face Jan Błachowicz. The Polish fighter's size ultimately proved to be the difference as he grinded out a unanimous decision victory.

Jared Cannonier now has his first chance at the middleweight title. It was expected the American would face Adesanya last year, but a loss to Robert Whittaker meant 'The Killa Gorilla' had to start again. A two-fight win streak with victories over Derek Brunson and Kelvin Gastelum has put Cannonier and his devastating KO power back in contention for the title.

Watch Chael Sonnen discuss Adesanya vs. Cannonier with 'The Schmo' here:


Israel Adesanya receives advice from Mike Tyson ahead of his fight with Jared Cannonier

Last month, Adesanya appeared on the Hotboxin' with Mike Tyson podcast with the former boxing heavyweight champion of the world. The two men shared a deep conversation and discussed the impact of being a role model.

Tyson helped Israel Adesanya view being a role model in a different light, as the middleweight champion admitted he didn't feel he was good enough to be one. 'Iron Mike' said:

"You wanna know why you feel like that? It's because you feel like you're not worthy of that. In your heart, you feel you're not worthy of being a role model... Who did you look up to and it made you wanna be a fighter? ['Izzy' said Anderson Silva] Well there you go... What's your definition of fake? Saying something to somebody and doing something else? You're not doing that. Why are you worrying about being a bad role model? You're not doing that."

Watch Israel Adesanya and Mike Tyson on the podcast here:


Edited by Aziel Karthak


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