Adesanya (24-3 MMA, 13-3 UFC) lost his UFC middleweight title in a shocking unanimous decision loss to Sean Strickland (28-5 MMA, 15-5 UFC) Saturday night in the main event of UFC 293. After the event, the Nigerian fighter stepped into the media room to announce that he wanted to be with his friends and family, and that Bareman would offer answers on his behalf.
Bareman, head coach at City Kickboxing, was probably just as shocked with the result as the rest of the combat sports world.
“The universe does things,” Bareman said at the UFC 293 post-fight press conference. “I think Sean is a great fighter and I never thought that Sean wasn’t capable of beating Israel, but I thought if Israel performed to the fullest of his capabilities, that it would be hard for Sean.
“There was an alternate kind of universe where Israel performs his poorest or poorly where Sean could win, and I’m sitting in that universe right now. Training camp was great. I’m not going to make any excuses in regard to that. Leading up to the fight was great, sparring partners, everything. All the technical things that have to do with the camp were perfect. No excuses there.”
Bareman is hoping the UFC books an immediate rematch between Adesanya and Strickland, as he’s confident they can get the belt back. He already expressed his interest to UFC matchmaker Mick Maynard.
Bareman believes Adesanya wasn’t on his A-game, and is sure they can beat Strickland even if they fought immediately.
“I asked Mick if we could have the rematch next weekend,” Bareman said. “Will he grant it? I’m not sure, but I’m just very confident we can change the outcome of this fight with some minor adjustments. What I’m saying is that we couldn’t get Israel to enact our plan. There wasn’t much cohesion in the corner. You have nights like this. I think we can do the rematch tomorrow and have a good night.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 293.