UFC 253 results, highlights: Israel Addisania beats Paolo Costa, retains middleweight title with TKO win

UFC 253 results, highlights: Israel Addisania beats Paolo Costa, retains middleweight title with TKO win

Israel Adesanya and the Paulo Costa spent months trading verbal shots, but when it came time to enter the appraiser at UFC 253, the only meaningful hits landed were those by the middleweight champion. After spending a full round in victory over Costa’s foot, Adesanya finished the opponent with punches in the second round of the main event at Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.

Adesanya’s strategy was evident early on as he maintained distance and offload kicks to Costa’s main leg, alternating outward kicks and knee kicks. When Adesanya landed, Costa would mockingly retaliate before attempting to cut the cage. But Adesanya’s foot movement was fine, allowing him to walk away from any danger before his leg attacks resumed.

Costa sought to turn things around in the second round, trying to squeeze a little more, but Adesanya continued to avoid exchanges and began mixing in blows to the head. Adesanya’s header kick opened a cut over Costa’s eye, and suddenly the opponent’s taunting ceased as he began to move back.

When Costa finally gets his wish and the two start exchanging nearby, Adesanya lands a peek at Costa’s temple, causing him to land on the canvas. Adesanya wasted no time pursuing Costa on the ground, unleashing a brutal wave of strikes and forcing the referee to stop the event at 3:59 in the second round.

Adesanya said after his victory: “I told you guys, but everyone is thinking … As Roy Jones said, ‘You must have forgotten’ because of what happened last time. ” “I had to remind the world who was the best.”

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With the win, Adesanya improved to 20-0 and sent a man who many felt was his division’s strongest rival. With options for new challenges dwindling after only two title defenses, Adesanya said he’s already informed the man who might be next to the next opportunity.

“I already DMed Jared Cannon,” said Adesanya. “He’s an amazing guy, I love his energy. I said, ‘I beat Robert Whitaker and you’re next. “If he beats Robert Whitaker, he’s next.”

CBS Sports has been with you all evening providing you with results and analysis from UFC 253 on Fight Island.

UFC 253 Fight Results

  • Israel Adesanya (c) def. Paulo Costa via TKO Round Two (strikes)
  • Jan Blasowitz was defeated. Dominic Reyes via TKO from the second round (Punches) to win the Light Heavyweight title
  • Brandon Roival Dev. Kay Cara France via presentation of the second round (guillotine choke)
  • Caitlin Vieira def. Sijara Eubanks by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Hakim Dawdu Zubaira Tokhujov via split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28)
  • Brad Riddle defeated. Alex da Silva by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Jake Matthews def. Diego Sanchez by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
  • Ludovit Klein def. Shin Young via TKO in the first round (head kick, punched)
  • William Knight Dave. Alexa Camor by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

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