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Blachowicz: Israel Adesanya will have to wait, I won’t fight ‘any earlier than March’

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UFC light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz won’t be fighting for the next four months.

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As UFC president Dana White confirmed over the weekend, Jan Blachowicz’s maiden title defense will be against reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya. The bout has no final date yet, but Blachowicz won’t be available for the next four months.

With the upcoming birth of his first child in December, along with the surge of COVID-19 cases in his home country of Poland, Blachowicz says Adesanya will have to hang back, for now.

“I can fight in March with anybody. It’s no problem for me. But I cannot fight any earlier than March. If Israel wants to wait, no problem,” he told ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on Wednesday.

“In Poland right now, the situation is not so good, and we don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow, the day after tomorrow. Right now we train normally, but nobody knows what our government is preparing for. We’ll see what’s going to happen later.”

For his part, Adesanya seems willing to wait it out.

“Nothing set or done yet. It’s all hearsay. I’m a very persuasive guy,” he told ESPN in another interview.

Both Adesanya and Blachowicz won their respective title fights via second-round TKO at UFC 253 in September. Adesanya stopped Paulo Costa to defend the belt for the second time, while Blachowicz won the vacant crown against Dominick Reyes.