Former middleweight champion Michael Bisping has gone on record that if Israel Adesanya wasn’t the current titleholder in the division then the man who would have taken the crown instead would be Marvin Vettori.
“If it wasn’t for Israel Adesanya right now, he’d (Vettori) be the champ, definitely,” Bisping said of the current No.2 contender in the division.
“He’s the next best guy at 185 in my opinion, he’s doing tremendous things. I’m a friend of Marvin’s, I think he’s tremendous. That fight he had against Paulo Costa was sensational. I called that fight, I was right there, he won that fight fair and square but Paulo Costa had a lot of success and some of the shots that Marvin ate, some of those kicks and punches and the power that Costa has, Marvin took every single f***ing one of them.
“(Vettori) never took a backwards step and fired right back every single time,” he added. “It was a really inspiring performance. I was already a fan but after that I was like wow, this guy is incredible, man.”
Adesanya has proven to be the 28-year-old’s Vettori’s nemesis, having now handed him two of his three career losses to date, but beyond that, ‘The Italian Dream’ has picked up numerous wins over other leading contenders, including the aforementioned decision win over Paulo Costa last time out, in addition to the likes of Kevin Holland, Jack Hermansson, Karl Roberson and Cezar Fereirra.