The Scout: Adesanya vs Vettori

Reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya (20-1) returns to his natural division and will be looking to defend his title for a third time against Italy’s Marvin Vettori (17-3-1). The pair fought back in 2018, with Adesanya grinding out a split decision victory in what was the first time he’d ever faced the judges scorecard in the UFC.

Since their first clash, Vettori has gone on to win five straight fights, most recently a lopsided, albeit slightly underwhelming, decision victory over Kevin Holland. Vettori is an aggressive fighter and will look to push the pace with constant forward attacking pressure. His game plan will be simple, close the distance, wrestle, and continually search for a hole in Adesanya’s defense.

Adesanya will be going back to basics after his unsuccessful attempt at the light heavyweight crown. What he does best is controlling distance with his long limbs, and firing off barrages of deadly kicks and precise counter strikes. Israel will use the early rounds to attack the legs of Vettori and hope that the Italian get a little too overzealous on the big stage. 

Vettori will no doubt be looking at Adesanya’s bout with Jan Blachowicz as a blueprint on how to beat the champion. Unfortunately for him he simply does not possess the same strength and weight advantage as Blachowicz.

I’m expecting Vettori to come at Israel all fight (as long as that is) but ultimately that style of combat plays right into the hands of the champ. Israel is an expert at landing his strikes, even when on the back foot, and I think one of those infamous counterattacking blows is what settles this fight.

SUGGESTED BET: Israel Adesanya by KO / TKO @ $2.70*

*Odds correct as at 4pm, 11th June 2021.

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