UFC champ Israel Adesanya’s classy gesture for his trainer on the long flight home to New Zealand wins over legions of fans
- UFC champ gives up his first-class plane seat after reclaiming the world title
- Israel Adesanya scored impressive second round TKO victory over Paulo Costa
- But controversy has surrounded the Last Stylebender’s post-fight antics
The 31-year-old middleweight extended his undefeated record to 20-0 on Sunday, demolishing Brazilian challenger Paulo Costa in the second round of their Fight Island match up in Abu Dhabi.
After an impressive performance, UFC commentator Jon Anik revealed it was what happened on the flight home via Las Vegas that was even more inspiring.
Israel Adesanya (pictured) showed his first-class character by giving up his seat on the flight home to New Zealand
The past 12 months have seen the unbeaten Adesanya (20-0) establish himself as one of the most popular – and marketable – athletes on the planet
‘Flew back to Las Vegas with the still undisputed king of the middleweights and you won’t be at all surprised to learn that Israel Adesanya gave his first-class seat to one of his cornermen. Total package, that guy,’ Anik posted to Twitter.
Known as The Last Stylebender, his close-knit City Kickboxing team – headed up by Auckland combat sports legend Eugene Bareman – has made a name for itself as one of the best MMA gyms in the world.
There are currently two UFC champions within its ranks – the other being Australian featherweight Alexander Volkanovski.
But although the Nigerian-born Kiwi’s TKO victory was emphatic, there was some controversy.
Adesanya appeared to ‘hump’ his bitter rival’s back immediately after referee Jason Herzog called a stop to the contest.
Adesanya is pictured being presented with the belt after his Fight Island match up in Abu Dhabi
The 31-year-old middleweight demolished Brazilian challenger Paulo Costa in the second round
He then followed up by launching an angry tirade aimed at Costa’s cornermen.
‘I wrap my d*** around my waist it’s a black belt, motherf*****’ Adesanya said, in in relation to pre-fight comments from Costa who labelled him white belt.
Since the bout, Costa has blasted the star striker for his post-fight antics.
‘I come here to talk about the actions that the human trash did after our fight,’ Costa said in a video posted to his Instagram.
‘I didn’t see when I was there [in] the cage but I saw now. I disapprove 100 percent. To me, this is [personal] now. Nobody will stop me. Nobody can stop me.’
Adesanya replied by saying: ‘I can stop you…again 🙂 Dislike.’
Adesanya appeared to ‘hump’ his bitter rival’s back immediately after referee Jason Herzog called a stop to the contest
The champion’s next opponent remains a mystery, but Adesanya is adamant he wants to get back in the cage as soon as possible.
When asked on ESPN’s MMA Show with Ariel Helwani if he will be ready to fight early next year, the champion scoffed at the thought of waiting so long.
‘What? Don’t be silly, I’m fresh. What?! Are you serious?’ he said.
‘This year, I want to fight this year. We talked a little a bit last night and I can’t say much more but we’ve got some plans, I want to fight this year.
‘I’m fresh. My foot only hurts from kicking his a***. But I can’t tell you yet…’
The Last Stylebender (pictured) told the ESPN MMA Show that he is fresh and eager to fight soon
Adesanya’s close-knit City Kickboxing team headed up by Auckland combat sports legend Eugene Bareman, has made a name for itself as one of the best MMA gyms in the world