Blachowicz vs. Adesanya took place March 6 at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. Jan Blachowicz (28-8) and Israel Adesanya (20-1) collided in a light heavyweight title contest on the event’s main event, which aired live on ESPN+ pay-per-view. Catch more video highlights below.
For more on Blachowicz vs. Adesanya, check out the live blog from MMA Fighting’s Jed Meshew below.
Blachowicz comes out in orthodox and Adesanya is in southpaw to start.
Feeling out process from both men for the first minute with Blachowicz taking the center mostly and Adesanya looking for reads. Pair of low kicks from both men start proceedings and then Blachowicz leaps in with a one-two that Adesanya evades.
Adesanya coming with a few body kicks, just touching the champion and the tries to go high but Jan slips. Very measured work from both men thus far and honestly, good defense from Jan.
High kick from Jan is barely blocked by Israel and Jan seems to have some respect from the middleweight champ. Leg kicks from both men are filling the space and Israel now looking to feint and open up shots. Israel also doing some stance switching but hasn’t landed anything huge.
Jan leaps with a lead hook that gets blocked. Israel’s feinting is opening up small shots for him, jabs and low kicks. Jan tries to force an exchange but can’t. Question mark kick for Israel misses. Honestly, nothing huge happened and the round ends. Competitive round, I guess for Adesanya but really, nothing major occurred.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Adesanya.
Statistically, Jan outlanded Israel in the first round apparently. A bit surprised by that but it’s a fine fight from Jan so far. Just not a ton of offense.
Round 2 looks much the same as the first. Israel showing much more volume this round but that has opened him up for some more shots from Jan who has landed a few good shots, including one to the body.
Israel throws a kicks and slips and Jan tries to jump on him but can’t get there. Inside kicks from Israel. Jan ducks under a shot from Israel and gets a clinch and then uses it for a takedown. Israel is up immediately but Jan gets a front head lock and goes for a knee.
Brief eye poke from Israel stops the bout but we’re back on and Jan lands a good body kick. Israel responds in kind and follows with a left hand. Then Israel goes for a low kick but it lands clean on the cup and causes another break.
With only a minute left, this has been another competitive round and the fight resumes. Israel lands a good jab but Jan comes in with a big right hand in the clinch. Adesanya landing some more shots now but Jan still firing back big power. This is a tale of tap-tap-tap versus the occasional big shot. Kind of like a more active version of Adesanya vs. Romero.
The round ends again without anything huge happening.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Blachowicz, 19-19 overall.
Honestly, you could have this scored any way you wanted. It’s very competitive and unless either man does something serious, this could be a nail-biter.
However, the third round starts same as the others and stats show Jan has the strike lead. Jan lands a good shot to start and he’s stepping in much better now. Jan comes in with a flurry and then gets a takedown! He’s on the back now! Israel escapes and now he’s fired up!
Adesanya clips Jan with a left hand and Jan is hurt and moving back. Now we’ve got a fight!
Jan gets out and at range Israel is starting to flow. Jan grabs a clinch and now he’s leaning on Israel against the fence, trying to wear him out. Israel is able to pivot and land a good shot on the break. Jan lands a solid straight but Israel feeling much more confident about the power coming back at him now.
Jan misses a head kick as Israel starts trying to style and Israel sits down hard on a right hand that barely misses. Big counter from Jan but Israel marching him down now and chipping away at the lead leg of Jan. Jan lands a heavy jab and it does seem that he has more power. Good counter from Jan as well. He’s digging back into this round with a minute left.
Adesanya steps in an Jan grabs a clinch. Double underhooks and he’s got Israel against the fence but Israel is strong here and they separate. The two trade shots and the round ends. Another competitive outing.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Adesanya, 29-28 Adesanya overall.
Championship rounds and this is where someone can start to pull away.
Jan comes out firing to start the round and immediately forces a clinch and now is working on a single-leg. Adesanya defends well and separates with a clean right hand. BIG RIGHT HAND FOR BLACHOWICZ backs Adesanya up and may have buzzed the middleweight champ.
Israel coming forward though and he’s getting drawn into some exchanges more. Leg kick from Israel responded with a body kick from Jan. Combo lands for Jan and Israel responds with a big right hand. That prompts Jan to go for a double-leg takedown and he just drives him to the floor. He’s in top-half in the center of the cage and this is excellent for the champion.
Jan staying heavy on top and working left hands. Adesanya tries to roll to hop but Jan is smothering him. That extra weight is money right here and Blachowicz is very underrated on top.
More control for Jan and short punches. Israel almost is able to get up but Jan just smashes him back down. Jan chipping away and this is easily his best round of the fight. Adesanya doesn’t have much from the back it seems. He’s trying to recompose guard but Jan steps to side-control now.
Jan still staying heavy and landing shots as they are available. Jan perhaps looking for a crucifix and Adesanya is moving a lot, spending a lot of energy and getting nowhere. Back to half guard for Jan and more top pressure and shots from Jan. Good elbow from Jan and this could easily be tied up heading to the final round.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Blachowicz, 38-38 overall.
In the corner, Jan’s coaches tell him to keep doing the same thing and it’s good advice. One more takedown for Jan could result in the biggest win of his career. Conversely, Adesanya cannot get taken down again.
Jan looking a little winded to start the fifth though and Israel looking okay. However, Jan lands a good jab to kick things off. Israel throwing lots of low kicks and jabs now, and countering Jan’s jabs. Jan steps through a combo from Israel to land a right hand.
Blitz from Jan doesn’t get anywhere and Israel is starting to flow. No takedowns from the champion yet.
Big right hand counter lands for Israel. Israel just touching Jan and Jan firing back. This is actually a really close round. Adesanya lands a spinning back kick to the body. Big right hand lands for Jan.
Israel feigning getting hurt? Or maybe he was but either way, Jan blasts a double on Israel and gets it in the center of the cage. Powerful takedown and now he’s in guard with two and half left.
Jan working from top and Israel opening his guard and looking for triangles. That’s a bad plan as Jan is too good for that nonsense and he moves to half guard. The champion is showing championship resolve here and he’s smothering Adesanya who is breathing heavy on the bottom.
Jan chipping away and now Israel is also throwing from the bottom, unable to stand up. Jan smartly moves Israel away from the fence and smothers a shrimp from Israel. He’s still in top half and chipping away. Israel with major urgency on short time but he cannot get up. Jan Blachowicz no postures up, moves to mount and rains big shots to end the round! What a showing from the champion.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Blachowicz, 48-47 Blachowicz overall.
Result: Jan Blachowicz def. Israel Adesanya via UD (49-46, 49-45 x2)