Israel Adesanya outlasted Kelvin Gastelum and put an exclamation on a spectacular fifth round where he almost finished him, to emerge with the interim UFC Middleweight strap.
In what was a intense back and forth encounter with both fighters pressing forward, it was Israel Adesanya’s Matrix-level striking technique that earned him a mega final round to clinch the contest.
Both men took punishment and had to grit it out and hang in there at different points in the fight. Gastelum almost knocked Adesanya down in the first round and had him majorly rocked with a headkick in the fourth. Adesanya knocked Gastelum down in the second and outstruck him comfortably in the third.
It boiled down to the fifth round and Adesanya rose to the occasion, putting a beating on Gastelum and almost finishing him after dropping him twice.
Kudos, though, to the sheer heart on display from Gastelum who hung on and prevented being finished.
What an insane fight though!