The UFC interim middleweight title will be up for grabs after this spring, and I will offer my thoughts on the UFC’s latest name combat announcement in the present MMA odds and ends.
Israel Adesanya vs. Kelvin Gastelum Together with UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker hurt, the UFC has decided to make an interim belt and it will be at stake at the main event at UFC 236, that can be set for April 13 at a yet-to-be-determined location. In the blue corner will be Israel Adesanya, fresh off his win over Anderson Silva in UFC 234, while at the red corner will be Kelvin Gastelum, that had his fight against Whittaker removed at the last minute the afternoon of UFC 234.
The information of Adesanya vs. Gastelum was first reported by ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. No location was announced, but rumors Twitter have the event pegged for Atlanta, Georgia, however that is far from supported at this point.
Betting odds for your bout were released here on MMAOddsBreaker.
Making an interim title will probably be controversial for a few considering what occurred last season with Colby Covington and Tony Ferguson winning interim straps and not getting shots at the undisputed titles, however it was a requirement because of Whittaker having not fought since last July against Yoel Romero. The UFC needed to keep the middleweight division moving along in his absence, so as far as this writer’s opinion is concerned, an interim title at 185lbs was certainly the right choice from UFC president Dana White and co..
As far as the matchup itself goes, the Adesanya vs. Gasltelum fight on paper seems like it has the potential to be a huge fight. Adesanya (16-0) is coming from a decision win over the legend Silva and general is 5-0 in the Octagon with other notable victories over Brad Tavares and Derek Brunson. At age 29, Adesanya is smack dab in his prime and reveals improvements almost every time we see him struggle. Surethe Silva fight was not his best performance, but he still got his hand raised, took no more harm in the process, and the win ended up earning him a title shot. Gastelum (15-3, 1 NC) is 10-3, 1 NC complete in the UFC and he has a 4-1, 1 NC record as a middleweight. Gastelum is coming off of back-to-back wins over Michael Bisping and Ronaldo“Jacare“ Souza and in age 27 he’s right in his prime also. Both Adesanya and Gastelum are a couple of the very best middleweights on Earth at this time, and contemplating the striking acumen of both men, this has the capacity to be a firefight.
As far as the odds go, they haven’t been released yet, but I’d anticipate the offshore sportsbooks to give something up for the fight shortly. When I had to guess, Adesanya are the betting favorite, although Gastelum absolutely will be a live dog in this fight due to his knockout power. It’ll be interesting to see what other conflicts will be added to UFC 236 at the forthcoming weeks, but this interim title fight between Adesanya and Gastelum is a great beginning to the card’s reservations.
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