At UFC 253, middleweight champion Israel Adesanya demolished challenger Paulo Costa, knocking out the top contender in the second round and earning a Performance of the Night bonus along the way. But it wasn’t just Adesanya’s dominant performance that made headlines that weekend. “The Last Stylebender” also drew attention for his right pectoral muscle, which appeared to be swollen before the fight even began. After the fight, Adesanya revealed he underwent medical testing to determine the cause of the swelling and now we know the results, though answers are still a bit wanting.
“Pec-gate. No, (I don’t have an update),” Adesanya told ESPN. “My pituitary gland was checked, hormone levels are fine, estrogen and testosterone. Yesterday we had an ultrasound and a mammogram. I had one for the first time. To be honest it might have just been unhealthy living a little bit. Like smoking weed, that’s what the doctor from the UFC said. He said I need to stop but I’m not stopping, I’m just going to slow down on the smoking weed.”
Gynecomastia, the medical term for swelling in male breast tissue, can be triggered by a wide variety of factors, including drugs and alcohol, various medications, and even herbal products. One of the more well-known triggers for gynecomastia is the use of anabolic steroids or androgens and after UFC 253, the champion’s detractors were quick to make this accusation. Adesanya unequivocally denies the use of performance enhancing drugs and went about trolling his detractors for latching onto that idea.
“It’s calmed down,” Adesanya said of the swelling. “It’s just a fat deposit. I mean, but after a performance like that, I’d think I was on steroids too because it was just mind-blowing. What the f*ck did I just do to that guy? The guy that, ‘He walked down Romero! No one walks down Romero! Why didn’t he use his boxing?! Costa should’ve stuck to his game plan, he would have won!’ Nah, bruh. There’s the common denominator. Some people are so stupid sometimes and it really baffles me. Do you understand y’all look stupid? There’s a reason he couldn’t use his boxing. There’s a reason he couldn’t just walk me down. If you know fighting, if you know, you know.”
For reference, Adesanya has been tested by USADA 33 total times since joining the UFC in 2018 and has never failed a test, including his 11 tests so far this year.
Adesanya doesn’t have much time to focus on his detractors now. Over the weekend, UFC President Dana White announced that Adesanya will be moving up to 205 pounds to challenge light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz for his second UFC title.
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