Following Dricus du Plessis’ middleweight championship win over Sean Strickland at UFC 297, the South African fighter wasted no time in calling out Israel Adesanya for his first title defense. Du Plessis expressed his desire for a showdown with Adesanya during the post-fight interview, prompting a response from the former champion.
Adesanya took to social media to address the call-out, sharing videos from a joint training session in 2016, their intense face-to-face confrontation at UFC 290, and a highlight reel of Adesanya’s championship run. In his response, Adesanya hinted at an impending clash, stating, “This arc in my story was written long ago. Our paths are destined to cross again. Stay tuned for the next episode, thanks for watching. We Write History.”
The rivalry between Adesanya and du Plessis escalated after a heated altercation in July, following du Plessis’ knockout win over Robert Whittaker. Originally slated to face each other in September, du Plessis had to withdraw due to injury, paving the way for Strickland to shockingly defeat Adesanya and claim the title at UFC 293.
Du Plessis, now the first South African UFC world champion, is eager to settle the score with Adesanya. In his post-fight comments, he said, “There was another guy who tried to take my shine. He lost his shine, and now I have your shine. Israel Adesanya, get your ass back in the UFC so we can settle the score.”
Adesanya responded to the call-out on social media, emphasizing that their paths are destined to cross again. The potential bout between Adesanya and du Plessis could take place at UFC 300, scheduled for April 13 in Las Vegas. UFC president Dana White supported the idea, considering it a logical next bout for both fighters.
While du Plessis downplayed any personal animosity, stating it’s a fight the fans want to see, Adesanya seemed ready to add another chapter to their rivalry. The anticipation for a potential clash between Adesanya and du Plessis adds intrigue to UFC 300, with an official announcement expected in the coming week.