UFC welterweight Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson has expressed his willingness for a fight against UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya.
Thompson was last in action at UFC 264 last month. Having won back-to-back fights against Vicente Luque and Geoff Neal, “Wonderboy” had hoped to extend his winning streak to three and secure a shot at Kamaru Usman‘s 170-pound title with a victory over Gilbert Burns.
But across their three-round co-main event, “Durinho” largely controlled Thompson on the way to a unanimous decision win. Despite many suggesting the loss signaled the end of the 38-year-old’s UFC championship aspirations, Thompson is adamant he can still reach the peak of the division.
While his sights remain firmly set on “The Nigerian Nightmare,” Thompson recently suggested a matchup between himself and Adesanya would be “very fun.”
During an interview with James Lynch, “Wonderboy” assessed a potential meeting in the Octagon with “The last Stylebender,” whom he described as one of the best on the feet in the promotion.
“I think it would be very fun. I think it would be an interesting matchup and win or lose with that, just stepping out there and fighting one of the best strikers in the UFC would just be amazing.” (h/t Sportskeeda)
Thompson went on to describe what makes Adesanya such a strong fighter, and given his own immense stand-up skillset, said a fight between the pair would be “awesome.”
“He’s got the reach, man. he’s got the length, he’s got great timing, (he’s) a scary opponent. But me being who I am and wanting to fight the best guys, the best strikers and me, you, know, considering myself one of the best strikers, why not? You know what I mean, I think that would be awesome. It would be (an) awesome fight, for sure,” said Thompson.
Adesanya was last in action at UFC 263 in June. In the main event, the Nigerian-New Zealander faced Italy’s Marvin Vettori for the second time in his UFC career. In a fashion more dominant than their first meeting, the champ comfortably secured a decision victory after the fight went the distance.
Having now defended his belt on three occasions, including wins against Paulo Costa and Yoel Romero, Adesanya is now expected to rematch Robert Whittaker, whom he claimed the middleweight gold from back in 2019. The bout is thought to have been delayed until 2022 due to COVID-19 restrictions.
How do you think Stephen Thompson would fare against Israel Adesanya?