The Kiwi mixed martial artist is continuing to win the hearts of MMA fans after impressively winning his fourth fight since joining UFC in February. He demolished sixth-ranked middleweight contender Derek Brunson in the main card opener of UFC 230 this weekend.
Now, the City Kickboxing star gained an opportunity to talk himself into a potential trans-Tasman title shot against Robert Whittaker. After jumping to the sixth spot on the UFC middleweight array, he’s now in the middle of a discussion with UFC President Dana White in Sydney.
— UFC (@ufc) November 5, 2018
In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, White didn’t hold back a thing in airing adoration at the middleweight newbie. In fact, the UFC executive thinks the Aucklander could be the next big thing in the prestigious MMA promotion.
“Israel is one of those guys who, if he can deliver, if he can win a world title, he will be incredibly famous.”
“And famous all over the planet. This kid can be incredibly big. I love everything about him. The way he talks, the way he fights… and the kid wants to fight every month.”
To figure out what comes next for the ‘Stylebender’, White agreed to meet him for a discussion in Sydney. When asked whether a shot at middleweight champion Whittaker’s belt is possible, White laid a positive response.
“It’s very possible, yes.”
“That’s why he’s flying in here, Israel wants to meet with me and talk. When he read that I was flying in here this week, he said he wanted to come across and talk, and that’s awesome.”
Whittaker will be defending his belt against fourth-ranked middleweight Kevin Gastelum in Melbourne in February. According to White, if ‘Bobby Knuckles’ gets past the American then a Bledisloe MMA super-fight is on the cards.
— UFC (@ufc) November 4, 2018
Also, the UFC boss confirmed to the Daily Telegraph that the Kiwi fighter is likely to be on standby to fight in February if Whittaker or Gastelum succumb to injury.
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Israel Adesanya