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UFC 259: Blachowicz vs. Adesanya

Blachowicz vs. Adesanya 

After a lot of anticipation, finally, there are hours left for the stellar  UFC 259 . With three belt contests and countless name fighters from the beginning to the end of the card , the event promises to be one of the liveliest of the year 2021.

Blachowicz vs. Adesanya

Jan Blachowicz (27-8 in MMA, 10-5 in the UFC) has built a very different trajectory from his opponent next Saturday. In the first two years in the UFC he had the glorious 2-4 retrospective, with victory in the debut against Itir Lattifi and another against Igor Pokrajac and defeats to Jimi Manuwa, Corey Anderson, Gustafsson and Patrick Cummins. The situation was so bad that the Pole was at risk of employment when he amended 4 victories in a row, until he was stopped by the Brazilian Thiago Marreta. The reconstruction took place with another quartet of victories, including the last one when he won the light heavyweight belt by knocking out Dominick Reyes in the second round at UFC 253.

Blachowicz started his career in judo and later wrestling , creating an efficient ground game that uses and abuses strangulation and appears to follow a methodical script of advancing positions. Standing, the Pole has a kickboxing of correct combinations, those that are not left over and there is no shortage of strokes. Jan makes the beans and rice from the violence, with an efficient jab , direct and strong hooks and a movement and defenses of mature blows. The knockout power is very good and it is a very strong point and the hasty manner in which he went about to be knocked out by Marreta seems to have been corrected.

Three years was enough to take Israel Adesanya (20-0 in MMA, 10-0 in the UFC) from a promising fighter with an excellent past in kickboxing to a respected champion, UFC game cover and with the morale of even with only two belt defenses, to be able to challenge the champion of the category without the feeling of being an unjust leap in line.

This distinction is due to three very relevant factors; the first is because the Nigerian has a very refined technique and an extremely attractive style for fans. The second is the charisma and the quest to differentiate itself from the crowd, which lead Israel to arouse public interest for factors other than the struggle. Finally, a path of bodies that were stretched across the floor, resulting in 9 victims, among which stand out names such as Anderson Silva, Kelvin Gastelum, Robert Whittaker, Yoel Romero and Paulo Borrachinha.

Within the octagon, Adesanya is a fighter notable for his accuracy in strokes, great distance control and a sense of variation from where the strokes will be thrown that leave opponents disoriented. As if that were not enough, Israel has one of the best movements in the sport and reflexes in the state of the art that allow it to find the best angles and get out of situations where opponents try to corner it. The defense of falls is very good and greatly helped by constant lateral movement, which is why the Nigerian is hardly knocked down and we have seen little of the ability that the purple belt of jiu-jitsu has on the ground. In addition, the middleweight champion's feints are a standout apart, as the “StyleBender” is one of the best in UFC history in this regard.

Both champions are improving with each fight and we have an interesting clash of styles in the main fight at UFC 259. Jan takes advantage of the knockout power and physical strength. When the Pole faced Luke Rockhold both factors made the difference in favor of the European and the difference in weight and strength is again a factor that cannot be underestimated. Blachowitz is expected to arrive at the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas with a weight of around 100 kg, while Adenanya will perform at least 10 kg less. Taking into account that the force is equal to the product between the mass and the acceleration, there are 10 kgs that can unbalance the equation of brains shaking inside the skull and attempts to fall. Jan is a heavyweight with a high knockout power, facing a fighter who made his entire career at middleweight.

Another element that the Pole can use is grappling, also taking advantage of the physical advantage to put Israel with their backs to the ground, something we haven't seen until then, and use their fully calibrated script to find a stranglehold at the end.

For Adesanya, the advantages are in speed, movement and relying on a talent that is clearly greater to capitalize on the mistakes that Jan may make. A hasty approach to the European would be terribly repelled by Israel. In addition, the Nigerian is a master in the art of moving so as to induce the opponent to position himself exactly where he wants, so that soon after a blow comes out of the hat and promotes the encounter with the doctors' lantern.

If Jan is stronger, Adesanya is much faster and can hit the Pole by rejecting the movements, until he maps the situation and the distance and sets up a trap for the knockout. Another way is to use speed, movement and distance control to take the fight to victory in the decision. Finally, there is the fear that Israel, being aware of the Polish's knockout power, will fight like the one it did with Yoel Romero, and turn all our expectations into a sleepy spectacle.

Like all these cards on the table, Adesanya is the most favored player and has the little help of the history goddess who must want to promote the Nigerian to become the fifth champion of two categories simultaneously in the UFC. Superstitions aside, the Nigerian has more talent and needs just a thousandth of a second to define fights, but also don't be surprised if physical strength doesn't help Blachowicz to get a knockout or submission.