UFC 276: Israel Adesanya defeated Jared Cannonier.
Israel Adesanya defeated Jared Cannonier via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 50-45) at UFC 276 on Saturday, July 2, 2022, live from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV.
“We know who is next, (Alex Pereira), trust me the first time I told you that was an error on my part spamming right hands and that was in kickboxing. It was easy to knock out the homeboy (Sean Strickland). What’s the hillbilly’s name? Because he was pairing the jabs. But like I said at the press conference, next time I put you on skates. You’re going to get frozen like Elsa. I’ll leave it at that,” said Adesanya.
UFC 276: Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier: Round-by-round recap
Before the fight even started, Adesanya came out to the Octagon to The Undertaker’s iconic entrance music. To complete the look, Adesanya held an urn and wore a hat similar to the one worn by The Undertaker. The entrance was sure to put a smile on the face of the WWE’s Vince McMahon, Stephanie McMahon, and Triple H who was sitting Octagon side following the conclusion of WWE’s Money In The Bank event which took place at the MGM Grand on Saturday. Adesanya then pretended to pee on the cage like a dog to mark his territory.
Cannonier moved into the middle and brought the fight to Adesanya, who landed a couple of leg kicks. The fighters traded leg kicks, with Cannonier landing a body kick. Adesanya found success with his jab early in the round and continued throwing it throughout the round. Adesanya landed a calf kick but Cannonier fired back with one of his own.
Adesanya was aggressive to start the second round as he pushed the action, landing a head kick. The two continued to trade leg kicks. The fight was stopped for a split second for a low blow but immediately restarted. Cannonier landed a right but Adesanya continued to press forward, landing a combination. The fight was paused for a second time after Cannonier was poked in the eye by Adesanya. Cannonier wiped his eye off with a towel and immediately told referee Herb Dean he didn’t need the doctor to look at him and was ready to fight. The two fighters continued to trade punches for the remainder of the round, with Adesanya using his jab to win the exchanges.
Adesanya opened with a kick to the thigh and then missed with a head kick. Adesanya landed an outside leg kick but Cannonier responded with his best combination of the fight. Cannonier changed levels and went for a takedown but gave up on bringing Adesanya down seconds later. Adesanya landed another jab. Cannonier came back with a shot to the body. Cannonier again went for a takedown before popping up and landing a right hand. Cannonier pushed Adesanya up against the fence and landed a couple of shots before Adesanya broke free. Adesanya moved back to the middle and landed a combination. Cannonier was able to push Adesanya up against the fence. From the clinch, Cannonier landed several knees and a big right hand. Adesanya broke away at the end of the round and landed a head kick right before the round.
Cannonier landed a big right hand to open the fourth round. Adesanya came right back with a jab and a front kick. Cannonier walked down Adesanya and landed a body shot. Adesanya landed another jab. Adesanya landed a big right hand. Cannonier landed a combination before missing with a massive right hand. Cannonier landed a body kick and went for another takedown. Adesanya was able to defend the takedown and get out of the clinch. Cannonier landed a right hand. Following a leg kick, Cannonier backed Adesanya up against the fence. Adesanya continued to land his jab whenever he wanted to.
Between rounds, Cannonier’s corner told him that he was down 3-1 and would need to put combinations together if he wanted to become champion. Adesanya continued to land his jab. Adesanya landed a short lead elbow. The fighters traded leg kicks. Despite trailing, Cannonier was not as aggressive as Adesanya, who dictated the action in the final round. Cannonier engaged in the clinch but Adesanya did a good job defending, preventing Cannonier from doing much of anything. With one minute left, Cannonier landed a big combination but Adesanya was able to hold on and slow the tempo of the fight. Adesanya came back with his own right hand. The crowd booed for the final 10 seconds, upset with the lack of action in the main event.
Adesanya entered UFC 276 looking to extend his dominance at middleweight. Since turning professional in mixed-martial arts, Adesanya won his first 22 middleweight fights. The lone loss for Adesanya occurred when he moved up to light heavyweight and was defeated by then-champion Jan Błachowicz at UFC 259. With his victory, Adesanya has successfully defended the middleweight title five times.
Cannonier began his career as a heavyweight. After splitting his first two fights in the UFC, Cannonier dropped to light heavyweight. Following mixed results, Cannonier dropped down to middleweight. The decision to move down in weight proved to be a wise decision. Cannonier won his first three fights at middleweight and five of his first six. The lone loss for Cannonier at middleweight came against Robert Whittaker at UFC 254, in a fight where Cannonier suffered an injury. Cannonier earned his title shot after scoring an extremely violent knockout of Derek Brunson at UFC 271.