This past Saturday at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, the former middleweight champion made a strong start but ultimately lost to Dricus Du Plessis through second-round technical knockout. Du Plessis is therefore set to face Israel Adesanya for the middleweight championship rather than Whittaker.
Whittaker recently responded to the loss in a social media video post.
“Congratulations to Dricus. He showed up to fight, and I didn’t,” Whittaker said. “But that’s the nature of the beast. You can’t have a day off. It is what it is. But I will say that I do believe that challenges and hardships and obstacles that get presented to you that you overcome, make you stronger. Build character, make you a better man and by fact a better athlete, and I will come back stronger from this.”
Adesanya was the only opponent to defeat Whittaker in the Octagon in 15 fights since June 2014 prior to Saturday night. The PMA Super Martial Arts representative wants to go back into the winning column as soon as possible.
“I will come back stronger from this,” Whittaker said. “I’ll come back hopefully by the end of the year. I want to get in the octagon by the end of the year to get in there, close the year on a win, and bring back the ‘Reaper’ you guys all know. But that’s me. I’m gonna enjoy a couple weeks now with my family just resting and recalibrating, recharging the batteries. Then I’ll get back in the gym, get back to work, and come back better than ever. Thanks again, everybody, and stay tuned.”