Video: Israel Adesanya suffers ghastly injury before UFC 287

Here's a clip of Israel Adesanya suffering a training injury that could've easily pulled him off UFC 287.

By: Milan Ordoñez | 1 month ago
Video: Israel Adesanya suffers ghastly injury before UFC 287
Israel Adesanya suffered a nasty injury while training for UFC 287. IMAGO | ZUMA

UFC 287 was a monumental night for Israel Adesanya. Not only was he able to recapture the undisputed middleweight title, He was also finally able to get one back from rival Alex Pereira.

But as it turns out, the road to glory was a bumpy one for “The Last Stylebender.” 

Israel Adesanya suffered a nasty injury in training

Israel Adesanya recently filmed a YouTube video with his brother David to talk more about the Pereira saga. About halfway through, the two showed a clip of a sparring session around 13 days away from fight night. 

It was during the wrestling sequence of the practice session when the injury happened. A bad fall from a takedown caused Adesanya’s right knee to buckle, forcing it towards the wrong direction. 

Watch the said clip below.

Israel Adesanya nonetheless chose to continue training. And he credits his mental toughness and previous experience of being in such bad spots for getting him through the entire ordeal. 

“Brunson fight, I hurt my knee,” he said. “Three weeks beforehand, I remember pops saying, ‘Just take five days off and do nothing.’ It was really bad. Took five days off after the Cortizone, got permission. Five days of nothing, three weeks before the biggest fight of my life in MSG. 

“Again, locking it in. Locking it down. It was the same thing, I was like, ‘it’s all part of the story. This is meant to happen.’” 

As David mentioned in the video, his brother suffered a Grade 1 MCL tear, which could’ve easily led to a withdrawal from the fight. But for Israel Adesanya, it was all about having the right mindset. 

“If you can’t change your circumstance, you change your perspective. So I was like, ‘Right, this has happened, this is my perspective. This is meant to happen. I’ll overcome this.’ So the comeback of getting from then to the cage was already a big win for me. ‘Cause I was, like, ‘Yo, I beat that.’ 

“That was really f—ng bad. That was really bad, but after that, I was like, ‘If I can get through that and into the cage, this fight, I can get through it.’ So, it added to my confidence, it added to my fortitude. I was just, like, ‘they can’t break me.’”  

What does Israel Adesanya want next? 

As he puts the Pereira rivalry behind, Adesanya has his sights set on a new challenger: Dricus Du Plessis. He’s already made things personal with the number six-ranked contender, and he’s so far keeping that same energy. 

“I’ve never questioned him as an African,” he told David. “Because yeah, you were born in Africa, South Africa. Of course, you’re an African. I’ve never questioned that. But who the f—k is this cracker to tell me who the f—k I am? Who the f—k Kamaru is. Who the f—k Ngannou is. Are you dumb? 

“As a product of colonization, you’re trying to tell me who the f—k I am. You can take the boy out of Africa, but you can never take the Africa out of the boy. I never, ever did that to him.” 

Israel Adesanya’s comments stem from Du Plessis’ previous statements about him and Kamaru Usman. 

“Did those belts ever go to Africa?” he said during the UFC 285 media day. “As far as I know, they came to America and New Zealand. I’m going to take a belt to Africa. I’m the African fighting in the UFC. 

“Myself and Cameron [Saaiman], we breathe African air. We wake up in Africa every day. We train in Africa, we’re Africa born, we’re Africa raised, we still reside in Africa, we train out of Africa. 

“That’s an African champion, and that’s who I’ll be.”

The 29-year-old Du Plessis (19-2) is on a seven-fight win streak and is so far undefeated in the UFC. He is coming off a second-round TKO win over Derek Brunson at UFC 285.

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About the author
Milan Ordoñez
Milan Ordoñez

Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments.

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