Sport Jason Wilnis buoyed by kickboxing win over Israel Adesanya ahead of MMA debut
UFC 264 Recap: Poirier Defeats McGregor via TKO After McGregor Suffers Apparent Broken Ankle
The Poirier-McGregor story now, incredibly, continues after McGregor suffered an apparent broken ankle at the end of the first round. LAS VEGAS, NV — UFC 264 ended in an unexpected manner, with Conor McGregor suffering a debilitating injury to his lower tibia in the closing moments of the opening round. Due to doctor stoppage, the fight was awarded to Dustin Poirier.Who possibly saw that coming?Poirier (28-6, 1 NC) looked sharp in the first round, drilling McGregor (22-6) with a vicious array of shots from his ground-and-pound game.
Jason Wilnis is the latest kickboxer entering MMA who has history with UFC champion Israel Adesanya.
Wilnis beat Adesanya in a somewhat controversial unanimous decision at GLORY 37 in January 2017, defending his 187-pound title in the process. It was Adesanya’s second-to-last kickboxing fight, and shortly thereafter he committed full time to MMA, rising the ranks to conquer the UFC’s middleweight division.
While that happened, Wilnis has been training MMA behind closed doors. His kickboxing record may have suffered as consequence – as he’s lost five of six since beating Adesanya – but it’s all built toward an MMA debut of his own.
MMA Twitter celebrates vintage Miesha Tate performance at UFC Vegas 31
Twitter reacts to Miesha Tate’s win against Marion Reneau at UFC Vegas 31 on Saturday night. After a five-year layoff, former UFC bantamweight champion and longtime women’s MMA pioneer, Miesha Tate, finished Marion Reneau at UFC Vegas 31. Tate entered the bout with a lot of unanswered questions. Years of self-reflection finally led to her making her return to the Octagon. The first two rounds were quite competitive, as both women traded blows on the feet before it finally got to the ground. Near the end of the second round, Tate was briefly caught in a kimura attempt before being saved by the bell.
On Sunday it will happen when Wilnis clashes with Erhan Okuroglu in the main event of Levels Fight League 2, which takes place in Amsterdam and streamsas well as FITEtv.
“My MMA debut is a long time coming,” Wilnis told MMA Junkie. “I tried to switch from kickboxing to MMA about four or five years ago and I was training a lot in wrestling and grappling but my coaches at the time didn’t feel it was the right time.
“I feel like kickboxing has become very limited for me and very one-dimensional. I want to use my elbows, I want to grapple, and I want to get the best out of me and my career and challenge myself.”
Gallery: On the Doorstep: 5 fighters who could make UFC or Bellator with July wins (SMG)
The 30-year-old Dutch fighter seemingly has the tools and dedication to thrive in MMA. And that’s his full intention. He hopes for a smooth debut in his new sport, and after gaining some experience has his sights set on the bigger promotions. The fact he holds a win over Adesanya is sure to bring added attention, and he welcomes it.
Updated Bellator MMA Rankings!
See the updated Bellator MMA rankings following Bellator 262.In other action, Matt Mitrione suffered yet another loss after he was knocked out by Tyrell Fortune in the very first round, which ultimately lead to the release of the former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) big man.
“My goal in MMA is to give everything in Levels Fight League and grow as an MMA fighter and then get to the UFC or Bellator,” Wilnis said. “I am coming into the sport with a win over the current UFC middleweight champ Israel Adesanya which is good to have for me no doubt. … I’m just excited to enter the sport and move onto the next stage of my career.”
It’s hard not to see the past connection between Wilnis and Adesanya and not wonder about a potential rematch in MMA. It’s a long way off at this point, but Wilnis’ goal is to find the type of success Adesanya has discovered in MMA after switching over.
He can’t deny it would be a great story if he could position himself to make the fight happen, but Wilnis said he’s not fixated on it and is focused on creating his own career.
“I’ve seen his rise through the UFC and I would be lying if I didn’t say that was somewhat of a motivation for me,” Wilnis said. “But my thoughts on MMA started before him. If I get to the UFC and our paths cross, I would fight him again for sure. However, I am on my own journey, and I would not say fighting him is a particular goal of mine.
Gym tour: See inside Sanford MMA (Video)
Check out what it's like inside one of the most notorious MMA gyms in the world, Sanford MMA. Sanford MMA is one of the most accomplished MMA teams and gyms in the world; with world-championship level talents such as Michael Chandler and Gilbert Burns gracing the grounds with their presence. Located in Deerfield Beach, FL, it shares a unique gym vs. gym rivalry with the American Top Team, which is located roughly eight miles west of the Sanford complex.
UFC 265: Lewis vs. Gane predictions, odds, picks: Best bets on the fight card from proven MMA expert .
Over the past 28 months, bettors who have followed Kyle Marley's UFC picks are up more than $14,000 . The accomplished MMA analyst has now connected on 34 of his last UFC 56 main-event selections, a stretch that includes a streak of five straight underdogs. Just last week at UFC Fight Night, Marley told SportsLine members to expect a dominant performance from middleweight contender Sean Strickland (-210) against veteran Uriah Hall (+190) in the main event. Strickland controlled the action to win a runaway unanimous decision to give Marley's followers another winner.