Israel Adesanya is moving up to light heavyweight to try and get his second UFC belt in as many weight classes. The middleweight champion makes it clear that he won’t be purposely bulking up and packing on the pounds as he prepares to meet 205 lb champion Jan Blachowicz.
“That’s Jon ‘Blow’ Jones downfall,” Adesanya told Submission Radio. “Like, ‘I need to move up in weight, pack on the size’. Some people are just stupid, they play the game so stupid. I’ve done it at kickboxing, I weighed in at heavyweight with my clothes on and a tray of Dunkin Donuts in my hand, and I was like 90-something kilograms. Like, skills, bro.
“Yeah, sure, you want to put on size? Alright. Is your body used to being that heavy? Are you used to moving around that heavy with the work-rate you were doing with all your previous fights? Yeah, I just don’t play the game like everyone else,” Adesanya said. “I’ll just chill, I’ll stay me. I’m gonna get stronger, I always do, but I’m not gonna purposely put on muscle just so I can be at a weight class. Stupid.”
Jones, who took up a lot of powerlifting in the latter stage of his career, previously admitted that being more muscle bound has hurt his performance. As he is supposedly preparing for a move up to heavyweight though, Jones is again back to constantly posting videos of himself doing heavy lifting to try and pack on more weight.
Georges St-Pierre ended up becoming a two-division champion in 2017, but he also stated that his attempts at trying to gain so much muscle for his middleweight title fight was a huge mistake. He says that forcing himself to eat and gain weight not only negatively affected his performance, it also did damage to his health.
St-Pierre says that after the ordeal, he now understands how the body has a “natural weight it can perform at its best athletic ability.”
As he mentioned, Adesanya already has experience moving up in weight and facing bigger opponents. In 2015 alone, he won two 8-man, one-night kickboxing tournaments at 86 kg (189 lbs) and 100 kg (220 lbs).
For this upcoming bout, Adesanya will obviously be bigger than his previous weigh in at 185 lbs after not having to diet and drop much weight anymore. He will still be severely undersized against Blachowicz though, who cuts a decent amount of weight to make 205 lbs, so it will be interesting to see how that match up unfolds.