Strickland’s Tune Changes With Regard To Respect For Du Plessis, Throws Hate Adesanya’s Way Instead

Back at UFC 296, Sean Strickland had nothing but hate for his upcoming opponent in Dricus Du Plessis, and that was made extremely evident by him lunging over a row of seats to attack the South African.

But, during UFC 297 fight week, his tune has changed dramatically, and it seems the two may have buried the hatchet and are just ready to battle at this point. Just a few short weeks ago, Strickland was threatening to stab Du Plessis for remarks about his childhood trauma, but now the champion is going the complete opposite direction and even telling the crowd in Toronto to cheer for the middleweight title challenger.

While the 185-pound champion seems to have smoothed a rough patch with his current opponent, he tossed some hate the way of the former middleweight titleholder Israel Adesanya while comparing the two during the UFC 297 press conference. The comparison came in response to the former titleholder’s prediction for the Strickland versus Du Plessis main event this Saturday.

“Here’s the thing about Dricus, he ain’t f****** Izzy — Dricus likes to fight,” Strickland shouted. “He likes to fight and he’s a hell of a fight. Do you know what that means? We’re going to be d*** to d***, nipple to nipple in that range f****** fighting.

“I hope after we’re done, win or lose, we’re f****** bloody and we put on a show for you f****** guys. Applaud him and encourage him. Because we want a f****** war!”


Strickland famously defeated Adesanya in Sydney, Australia at UFC 293. The performance displayed Strickland’s relentless pressure and showed the fans a level of timidity from Adesanya that had not yet been seen.

The bout earned Strickland the middleweight title, a performance of the night bonus, and has been listed as one of the biggest UFC title upsets of all time.

“Real talk you guys, me and Dricus, we’re going to try to f****** kill each other for you guys,” Strickland said. “Dricus, can I get an agreement to the f****** death? To the f****** death! Godd*** respect him for that.”

“Listen Izzy, the f****** guy, the f****** cringelord, the pup play himself. F*** Izzy,” Strickland said. “I could have took Izzy down and beat his ass on the ground but I chose to stand with him like a man. What did he do the whole fight? Run away like a b****. Izzy, shut your f****** mouth.”


Strickland and Du Plessis will square off in the main event of UFC 297 this Saturday at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.

The early prelim bouts will begin at 6:30 p.m. ET / 3:30 p.m. PT, with the ESPN preliminary card following at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT.

At 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT the five bout, two title match main card will get started on PPV.



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