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Eugene Bareman questions Chris Weidman as potential Israel Adesanya opponent: ‘Is he even ranked?’

Eugene Bareman questions Chris Weidman as potential Israel Adesanya opponent: ‘Is he even ranked?’

Chris Weidman during training for a UFC bout

City Kickboxing head coach Eugene Bareman doesn’t think Chris Weidman makes any sense as a potential next opponent for Israel Adesanya.

Adesanya is coming off a second-round TKO win over Paulo Costa and has already targeted his next title defense to be against Jared Cannonier who meets Robert Whittaker at UFC 254 later this month.

However, Weidman recently took to Twitter to explain why he’s long believed he’s the one who can take out Adesanya.

Adesanya has had his eye on Weidman in the past, but told him to first get some wins before talking of facing him.

While Weidman did recently return to the win column following a unanimous decision victory over Omari Akhmedov, he still has some way to go before he can think of a title shot given that he has only won twice in his last seven outings.

And though Bareman likes challenges — especially as Weidman will present a huge wrestling one — he questioned the thought of the former champion being a potential next opponent for his pupil.

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“When I take my coach’s hat off, and the fact that I love challenges and stuff, but it does have to make sense. And is he even ranked?” Bareman told Submission Radio.  “He was the champion once, yes, and he has to be respected for that. But yeah, the fact that I’m even asking these questions [of who he last fought] is kind of, that’s our answer to this.

“He has a whole lot he has to do before he puts himself into position to fight Israel, and the middleweight division is not the same middleweight division that he started his era in. These guys are a lot different to the middleweights that he started his era in, and there’s some big challenges for him to overcome before he starts talking about Israel.”

Ideally, Weidman would have to get a few more wins before staking a claim for a title shot.

But with Adesanya’s desire to fight again before the end of the year, there could be a possibility, albeit a small one, that Weidman gets a shot given his name value and standing as a former champion. For now, though, “The All American” is not someone Team Adesanya is keeping a particular eye on.

“But no, he’s not in our plans in the near future,” Bareman concluded.

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