With UFC 263 set to take place this weekend, the question of whether UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya is gay, bi or straight is once again a hot topic of conversation.
Unlike his career earnings, which are a matter of public record, the specific details of his private life are something he keeps close to the vest.
Adesanya’s sexual preference has been a popular subject of conversation over the years. The questions have only intensified since he established himself as one of the greatest mixed martial artists in the sport today.
This past week, speculation regarding whether Adesanya is straight, gay or bi resurfaced once more when old photos of him with bright pink hair got posted online.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) August 6, 2020
This led to intense debate on MMA message boards regarding Adesanya’s preferences.
“I have a feeling Izzy might be gay,” wrote one user.
“Has he come out yet?” questioned another.
Several users wrote that someone of Adesanya’s stature coming out would be huge for the LGBTQ community, as it would crack open a lot of stereotypes in sports culture and society in general.
“Honestly a big name coming out would help the sport,” wrote one person.
“There are gay male fighters but they don’t ever come out because of the stigma.”
This is not an isolated discussion.
In 2019, when Adesanya took on and defeated Anderson Silva, a similar argument raged.
“As a Bi man myself I get the vibe,” one user wrote of Adesanya.
“In the latest count down when he took his dogs for a walk and a kitten on his chest he has a guy with him usually thats the time to show a gf and or kids. Never introduced him as a nutritionist, or coach they live together and they seem pretty close. And that guy looks to be the guy that Israel kisses after koing Derek Brunson.
“He also posts tons of gay pictures on his insta some have been taken down.”
Some have also brought up an appearance Adesanya made on The Breakfast Club last year, where the topic of significant others came up.
And then of course there was also his choice of celebration after defeating Paulo Costa last year.
It goes without saying that it does not matter if Adesanya is straight, gay or bi. His sexual preference is his business and he can share or it keep it quiet as he sees fit.
The Bucks owner’s daughter decided to bring 2021 in with a bang by stripping all her clothes off. https://t.co/UgzhEEna4o
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 7, 2021
With that in mind, there is no belittling how meaningful it would be if someone of his magnitude came out.
Any athlete coming out is a big deal – but one of the toughest, strongest and most gifted fighters of all time doing it would be on a whole different level.