Adesanya Ready for UFC 300 Main Event, But Du Plessis Takes a Pass

In a recent revelation, Israel Adesanya disclosed that he was geared up to headline UFC 300 against Dricus Du Plessis, but the South African middleweight champion wasn't ready for the quick turnaround.

Du Plessis clinched the championship after a hard-fought five-round battle against Sean Strickland at UFC 297 in January. Despite calling out Adesanya for a showdown, a less-than-three-month recovery period seemed too soon for the newly crowned champion.

“There’s some things that were meant to happen,” Adesanya said on “This Past Weekend” w/ Theo Von. “They summoned me. I’m sure this is out there now, Eugene (Bareman) said some stuff, but they summoned me for 300 and I was like, ‘Yep, let’s roll.’ But their side didn’t want it. They didn’t want it.


“They just fought Strickland, so maybe he had a little bit of niggly injuries and stuff, but we’ve all got niggles and what not. But I’ve fought injured for the last how many fights, so that’s why I took time off just to let my body heal. It has healed, and I’m sure there will be more injuries. It just happens through training. Like what we do for work, it’s constantly something.”

As a result, UFC 300 will now feature a light heavyweight title fight between champion Alex Pereira and former champ Jamahal Hill. Adesanya, whose last bout was in September, faced an upset by Sean Strickland, who only got the title shot because Du Plessis was nursing a foot injury from his July 2023 bout with Robert Whittaker.

Although the highly anticipated bout between Adesanya and Du Plessis won't take place at UFC 300 in April, both fighters have expressed their openness to headline an event in the future, especially when the UFC visits their home continent of Africa. Despite the setbacks, the desire for this matchup remains strong, leaving fans hopeful for a showdown between these two skilled fighters on African soil.


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