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The Last Stylebender's reign: Israel Adesanya aims to solidify middleweight greatness

UFC Middleweight Champion, Israel Adesanya
UFC Middleweight Champion, Israel Adesanya
Soumik Datta
Modified 26 Sep 2020

"Hear this: I'm not only Kira, but I'm also God of the new world!”

If there's any particular quote that could perfectly describe popular anime character Light Yagami, then we're almost bound to pick the one mentioned above. Regarded as quite the revolutionary character, the main protagonist of the manga series Death Note masterminds a worldwide massacre as the vigilante Kira and uses the Death Note to kill someone he thinks is unworthy.

Throwback to October 6, 2019, and with Big Rulez's Hype 2 Hype buzzing around a 60,000 filled Marvel Stadium in Australia, Israel Adesanya made the biggest walkout of his career. One that not only caught the global attention due to its flashy antics but one that eventually became special due to what followed next.

Israel Adesanya sets sight on middleweight greatness

It's almost once in a while that you get to see a unique athlete announce his arrival to a sport in such an immense manner, one that Israel Adesanya has. Full of energy and charisma, the Nigerian born sensation made his UFC debut just two years ago and already has wrapped his hands around championship gold.

Like the man himself recently pointed out, it's pretty rare for someone to make his/her way to the top of the throne within such a short period. While in most cases, fighters have to struggle quite a lot in order to get to that point, Israel Adesanya for one, has made it look quite easy. His undefeated record in the UFC being the rightful prove of that.

Going back to the original quote from Light Yagami, the Death Note protagonist labels himself as Kira, meaning Killer. Similarly enough, it could be said that Israel Adesanya has so far followed that mentality to carve his path to greatness. The Kiwi bred fighter began his UFC run by putting away top dogs in Marvin Vettori, Brad Tavares, and Derek Brunson. And when you get off to a start like that, you're bound to be confident and bound to cement your place in the history books.

However, despite registering his name into the win column, one could very well question the credibility of Israel Adesanya and by no means is that disrespectful to the guys he had faced in the Octagon. Adesanya was out to prove a point and in the lead-up to his undisputed title win, The Last Stylebender took up one of the biggest challenges of his career and finally decided to Enter The Matrix.


From The Spider to The Reaper:

February 10, 2019, and the location was once again Australia, this time at the Rod Laver Arena. With Robert Whittaker pulling out of the title main event a few hours prior, Israel Adesanya stepped up to the plate and spun in The Spider's web. That's right, competing in his first PPV main event, The Last Stylebender found himself standing across the Octagon against his idol, the greatest UFC Middleweight Champion in history, Anderson Silva.

Adesanya and Silva gave the world a classic that it deserved, and with a win over the latter, The Last Stylebender went on to get his first crack at UFC gold, as he beat Kelvin Gastelum within the space of two months to win the interim 185-pound title. But in Adesanya's book, that wasn't enough. He was hungry for more and wanted to set the record straight.

Fast forward to October 2019, Israel Adesanya found himself back in the Octagon for the third time in the year, and shortly after walking out with his cavalry to Hype 2 Hype, The Last Stylebender took a page out of Light Yagami's book. With Bruce Buffer introducing the interim champion on the top of his lungs, the world finally witnessed The Last Stylebender writing Robert Whittaker's name in the Death Note.


One might bill this as cocky or sheer confidence but in hindsight, Israel Adesanya ultimately proved himself to be a man of his words. All it took The Last Stylebender was 8 and a half minutes to put away the man they call The Reaper and with the crowning of a new champion, not only did Israel Adesanya legitimize his place as a Kira but he also became the God of the World.

From testing himself with The Spider to putting The Reaper to sleep, Israel Adesanya's journey has not been easy. And in less than 24 hours, The Last Stylebender will cross paths with his toughest task to date as he faces The Eraser, the one and only, Paulo Costa. With an underwhelming win over Yoel Romero, the reigning champion might have that extra bit of pressure on his shoulder but a win on Fight Island and Adesanya will be on the right track to surpass Silva as the greatest middleweight champion.

With two undefeated streaks on the line, the UFC 253 headliner promises to be a fight you wouldn't wanna miss. But overlook him once again and Israel Adesanya might just add Borrachinha's name into the Death Note.

Published 26 Sep 2020, 22:24 IST
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