By Danny Armstrong
Danny Armstrong is a Moscow-based British journalist, reporter and presenter for RT Sport. Follow him on Twitter @DannyWArmstrong
UFC middleweight Marvin Vettori has admonished and vowed Division King Israel Adesanya to finally spread the “undeserved hype and bullshit” that surrounds his name before finally targeting Stylebender’s sense of clothing.
In an interview with RT Sport, the 27-year-old northern Italian met former enemy Adesanya and insisted that the Nigerian-born New Zealander doesn’t live up to his nickname because he has no style at all and has vowed to derail the ” Hype and Bullshit “that surrounds the name of the 185 lbs title holder.
Their feud stems from the fact that Vettori lost a split decision to Adesanya in 2018 and thus came closest to the 31-year-old in the professional MMA of a fighter until he lost to light heavyweight ruler Jan Blachowicz in a failed bid that would become a two-weight Champion.
Vettori was scheduled to lead UFC Fight Night against Darren Till on April 10, until a broken collarbone excluded the Englishman from that date in Las Vegas – and in “Big Mouth” Kevin Holland filled the void left by the one-off welterweight title challenger .
In an interview with RT Sport on Whatsapp, Vettori insisted he had no problem switching opponents, discussed his pride in his Mezzocorona-born roots and why Adesanya reminds him of a middle school teenager.
They want to “finally derail the Adesanya hype train”. Do you think Adesanya is all hype or did you say that on the spur of the moment?
I think Adesanya is very overrated. That’s what i’m thinking It’s my job to turn it off for good and derail the hype train. There’s all this hype and shit that they wrote around his name that I don’t think he deserves, so that’s what I meant when I said it.
Adesanya is the style bender, but you are undoubtedly a man of style. We saw your Stone Island fur-trimmed jackets. You have your own fashion brand. Are you the most stylish man in the UFC?
I believe in “looking good, feeling good, and fighting good,” you know. So I definitely think I like to dress well and wear nice things. Certainly. And there are very few people who can get dressed. In fact, very few can dress properly in the UFC.
And one of those who can’t get dressed is Adesanya! He dresses like a teenager, like a guy from middle school, not even high school. Every time I see this guy I think, “What the hell is he doing?” But yeah man you know it’s definitely important to look your best when you have a chance to show yourself off.
Kevin Holland is a very different fighter than Darren Till. Does that matter or are you ready for someone in the top 10?
Yes, Kevin Holland and Darren Till, they are a little different. But at the end of the day when I’m ready there is nothing they can do. I really believe that in every fight I am superior. Wherever the fight takes place, I have the advantage and so the schedule is the same. Go out, do the best performance, bring out the best version of me and crush it. So it doesn’t make a big difference to me.
Kevin is a crazy guy to prepare for. Are you ready for his tactic during the fight and have you considered how you will react to it?
Kevin is a little wild. But I don’t think that I will be talked to a lot in the fight with me because he will be worried about the fight. And if he talks, no problem. No problem. I’ll just remember to play my game and he can talk as much as he wants.
As a fighter, you lived a truly nomadic lifestyle. You started training in Italy before moving to London as a teenager and then to the US as a young man to train at Kings MMA. Has this lifestyle, in which you have been forced to adapt, given you an added advantage?
Yes – I always said I always have to work to get the job. And I’ll never forget that. I had to do things that people can’t even imagine to get where I am. That’s why I’m a different animal in this cage, you know?
And yes, I definitely think it gave me an extra edge, extra motivation. I know where I come from and where I am right now and I know what to go through and I will never forget it.
And even here, you know, I’m here – I say that, but I’m really there: I’m on a mission. I am here for that. I am here to become number one in the world. I’m here for no other reason. I’m really here for no other reason.
Your Instagram is full of Mezzocorona landscapes and architecture and people crouching in cafes on the streets. You seem to want to be one with the country and the people of your nation as much as possible and to carry this pride into the octagon.
Yes! For sure. I know where I come from. I know my roots and that’s where I belong. As I said before, of course I am here for a reason and I will try my best. I want to be number one in what I do. But of course I love my place at home and I miss it very much. Of course, every time we have an opportunity, I will enjoy life in these places at home.
What will we see of you on April 10th?
On April 10th you will see a demolition. You will see Marvin Vettori crush another fighter in this cage.