‘I Know How That Book Ends’

While Robert Whittaker may have been much more competitive with Israel Adesanya in their rematch earlier this year at UFC 271, it doesn’t look like a third encounter is happening anytime soon, if at all.

That’s according to the reigning middleweight champion, who ruled out the possibility of a trilogy with Whittaker at a recent UFC press conference. Adesanya is currently slated to defend the 185-pound belt against Jared Cannonier in the UFC 276 headliner on July 2 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

“He’s a great fighter, I’m going to give it to him,” Adesanya said of Whittaker. “But I know how this book ends. I have already read this book twice. The first time was a quick read. The second time a little longer.

“He’s probably going to be at the top for a while. If we fight again, I know how this book ends. That’s why I’m excited for this next fight, new blood, someone I’ve never fought before. Whether
[Whittaker] wants, it should go up to 205, see what it’s all about, maybe try a little. I don’t like to read the same book over and over again.

Cannonier, a former heavyweight and light heavyweight contender, has earned five of six Octagon appearances since dropping to 185 pounds. Although Adesanya is motivated to take on a new face, he doesn’t necessarily see Cannonier as his toughest challenger. In fact, he’s planning an early night for “The Killa Gorilla” on July 2.

“Everyone is a tough challenger. He still carries that strength, so I can’t overlook him,” Adesanya said. “But I don’t think he’s the toughest challenger. I really think I’m going to make it easy.

“It’s gonna be funny. It’s gonna be a lot like [Paulo] Costa is fighting.

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