Former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley believes the promotion has its next big star in Israel Adesanya.
Adesanya became the undisputed middleweight champion following an impressive knockout victory over Robert Whittaker at UFC 243 earlier this month in Melbourne, Australia.
Many felt the performance as well as the occasion, including Adesanya’s iconic walkout at the Marvel Stadium, served as a launchpad for “The Last Stylebender” to be the next big star for the UFC.
Woodley certainly agrees as although he doesn’t expect Adesanya to surpass the biggest draw in the sport today in Conor McGregor, he expects him to be right below him.
“I think Israel’s going to evolve into a star right underneath Conor McGregor and it’s hard to deny him,” Woodley said on TMZ. “He fights crazy, he has great IQ, he’s tough, he showed he can take punches, he’s with the shit, he’s going to talk shit in press conferences.
“His entrance was the best entrance that we’ve ever seen in mixed martial arts. Even when freaking Conor had a loud musician playing at the top, it superseded that in my opinion. He’s getting better with time so for me, I like fights that excite me. … I know talent from a mile away, I know star power from a mile away. He in the next two years will be right underneath Conor McGregor.”
It’s hard to disagree with Woodley. Like “The Chosen One” predicted, two years could be enough for Adesanya to truly become a needle mover.
And if by that time, he has cleared out the middleweight division, a super fight with light heavyweight champion Jon Jones wouldn’t hurt his chances either.