As the highly anticipated UFC 297 took, fans were buzzing with excitement and fervently making their predictions for the upcoming bouts. In the middle of this, Chris Weidman of the UFC selected the ‘Top 5 African fighters in UFC history.’ His list surprised the online MMA community.
Dominic Cruz, Daniel Cormier, and Weidman selected the best African competitors in UFC history. Weidman selected Francis Ngannou, Sodiq Yusuff, Israel Adesanya, Kamaru Usman, and Dricus Du Plessis. But Chris Weidman had only named the people on his list, and it was not in any particular order. Fans were surprised, and the list quickly went viral online.
Dricus Du Plessis had previously asserted himself as the sole real African fighter in the UFC. He also expressed his desire to become the first residing African UFC champion. This bold statement drew criticism from fellow combatants and ex-champions, including Kamaru Usman and Israel Adesanya.
Usman responded, questioning Du Plessis’ aspiration to be the “legitimate” African UFC champion. On the other hand, Adesanya criticized Du Plessis for attempting to undermine the achievements of “real African” UFC champions. In response, Du Plessis denied making the claim. He then clarified that he never suggested being “more African” than Adesanya or Usman.
The spotlight of UFC 297 was be on the main event clash between Sean Strickland and Dricus Du Plessis. Following his victory over Israel Adesanya, Strickland competed to defend his title for the first time in this highly anticipated matchup. However, he ended up losing to Du Plessis via decision.
Chris Weidman’s unconventional list stirred up a frenzy on social media platforms, with netizens flocking to the comment section to share their opinions and reactions. The inclusion of Dricus Du Plessis particularly amused many fans, while others humorously questioned the absence of Mike Perry on the list.
Some of the comments were as follows:
“I’m sorry… but WHHAAATTTTTT!?!??! This has to be a troll, right?!?!?”
“izzy just decides to be african when it benefits him so you cant put him on the list”
“Today I learned UFC fighters don’t know how to make Top 5 lists”
“I totally agree that DDP is an African fighter (much more than Izzy or Marty), but putting him in number 1 just doesn’t make sense.”