Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Uriah Hall Believes Israel Adesanya Is Handpicking Fights

Uriah Hall really, really wants to fight reigning UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya.

#8-ranked middleweight Uriah Hall has been competing in the UFC for seven years now but is yet to come close to a world title shot. But the 36-year-old has now tied the longest winning streak of his UFC career, earning three consecutive victories. Hall was ready to bring that total up to four by fighting Chris Weidman at UFC 258, but unfortunately, a positive COVID test forced Weidman out of the fight.

While Hall awaits word on either a new date or a new opponent, he can’t help but think about his dream matchup: Israel Adesanya. As dominant as Adesanya has been, Hall believes that he has been handpicking his opponents, but he admits that this opinion might be influenced by his desire to fight The Last Stylebender ASAP.

“I know this is just gonna get me in trouble; I think this dude’s just picking fights, man,” Hall told MMA Fighting while appearing on What the Heck. “He’s picking fights, and maybe he has that leverage. But maybe [I think that way] because I want to fight him so bad. I really want to fight him.

Five Questions with Uriah Hall | UFC
“Primetime” Uriah Hall. Image: UFC.com

“Good god, I want to fight this f*cker so bad,” Hall explained. “But with the politics, the media, it’s like someone saying, ‘Well, you’re not worthy.’ Or, it’s the ranking system: ‘We here think you’re number eight. We feel that you’re number eight. We’ve never competed before, but we think you’re number eight.’ Get the f*ck out of here. Who comes up with this ranking system? It’s a joke. So you’re gonna tell me what number I am?”

Uriah Hall’s Target On Adesanya Strictly Business

As adamant and fired up as Hall is when speaking about Adesanya, his desire to compete against the middleweight champion is not influenced by anything personal at all. He simply sees Adesanya as someone he must share the Octagon with, the sooner the better.

“But yeah, this is coming from a very pure, competitive side, but you have to sort of weave through all of the politics to get to him. I gotta do what I gotta do to get to him. That’s what I want. I was hoping he wouldn’t leave the title because, like, I want to beat you. But [if he does], even better. I’ll get there, grab it and come to you. I’m just very competitive like that and he’s one of those guys that would bring the best out of me.”

Unfortunately for Hall, it looks like it’s going to be a long wait if this fight is to happen. Israel Adesanya is set to challenge Jan Blachowicz for the light heavyweight title next month; and Robert Whittaker, Paulo Costa, Marvin Vettori, and Darren Till are all clearly ahead of Hall in the middleweight title picture. In addition, all four of those men have fights coming up in April, which will move two of the four closer to fighting Adesanya later this year if the champion decides to return back to middleweight.

Do you think Uriah Hall would have a legitimate chance at upsetting Israel Adesanya if the two meet down the road?

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