Israel Adesanya and Dricus du Plessis were set to fight at UFC 293 in September, but Adesanya backed out due to injury. Sean Strickland replaced him and won the fight, causing Adesanya to take an extended break from fighting. In response, Dricus du Plessis expressed confusion at Adesanya’s announcement in an interview on the Hack Check Podcast.
Strickland’s victory was surprising, as many expected Adesanya to dominate the striking exchanges. After the fight, Adesanya announced his break from competition, citing his busy schedule as a factor. Former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker also commented on Adesanya’s announcement, acknowledging the demands of their professional lives outside of the ring.
The comments from both fighters were shared in interviews and embedded in the article to provide context.