Yoel Romero clearly feels Israel Adesanya was scared to engage with him.
The pair collided for the middleweight title at UFC 248 this past weekend with many expecting an explosive finish to what was already a night full of red-hot action.
It was anything but, though, as both fighters did little to engage with each other in what was a drab affair. Adesanya did land the more significant strikes overall — mainly with leg kicks — which eventually led to him earning the unanimous decision nod.
However, whenever Romero landed — as he did towards the end of the first round for example — it seemed to be doing much more damage. Whenever such exchanges occurred, Adesanya did all he could to get out of the way with one clear instance of him running away during the contest.
That was a point of criticism from many for the champion and Romero decided to mock him for it on Monday while declaring himself the people’s champion.
“No me. You. #peopleschamp”
Romero also made his thoughts known on the inactivity during the fight in the post-fight press conference where he criticized “The Last Stylebender” for running.
“It’s impossible to fight against a ghost,” Romero said. “I don’t know how anybody could expect me to fight against a ghost.”
“I’m going to start training for track or cross-country because obviously, he’s a cross-country and a track star so I need to catch up to his sport.
“The only thing I feel is that I’m ashamed that I couldn’t give the fans a fight or a war that everybody wanted. It just became a running match and I just feel bad in general. It’s a huge disrespect that supposedly an apparent grand champion of the UFC–It’s a disrespect comparing him to Anderson Silva.
“Anderson Silva at 30 years old would make the whole stadium stand up. It’s a huge disrespect what Israel did today for the fans and for the sport of the UFC.”
No matter which side you think was at fault for the underwhelming title fight, a rematch doesn’t look likely to booked anytime soon.