'A masterclass in execution'. That's how Israel Adesanya's UFC 253 title defence against Paulo Costa has been described following his round two TKO yesterday.
Adesanya outclassed Costa to win by TKO, handing the Brazilian his first professional loss in emphatic fashion.
The Kiwi moved to 20-0 in his professional mixed martial arts career after having little trouble with normally aggressive Costa.
The world's UFC media were impressed with the performance.
"Israel Adesanya is a special fighter. There's no denying that at this point. What he did against Paulo Costa was a masterclass in execution," MMA Junkie's Mike Bohn wrote.
"It's going to be really interesting to see what the future holds for Adesanya. He's right there on the cusp of being an absolute superstar, and if all the things UFC president Dana White said about to metrics related to UFC 253, and the headliner in specific, are true, then he's very much on his way," Bohn added.
ESPN had similar praise for the Halberg winner.
"Adesanya had a "boring" tag hung on him by critics after a lackluster win over Yoel Romero in March. But that label didn't fit on Fight Island as Adesanya pieced up top contender Paulo Costa to retain his middleweight belt. He made it look easy," ESPN report said.
"That fight was a master class. It was never in doubt. There's levels to this game, and Adesanya showed us - again - that when it comes to the middleweight division right now in the UFC, he is levels above the rest," ESPN's UFC expert Ariel Helwani added.
In the Herald's report, NZME's Christopher Reive said Adesanya was a man of his word.
"It was exactly the kind of performance the 31-year-old said he would deliver, backing up from his bout against Yoel Romero earlier in the year which received a lot of criticism for inactivity," Reive wrote.
"Adesanya was quicker, he was smarter and he was just plain better than Costa," said Yahoo Sports columnist Kevin Iole.
"People were into the fight big-time because they were about to see two great fighters square off for all the marbles.
"What we saw, though, was something less. There was one great fighter, who stands among the best champions the UFC has ever had, tearing apart a very good one."
Adesanya will now await his next challenger, with a keen eye on the matchup between former champion Robert Whittaker and Jared Cannonier. Adesanya has made no secret he believes Cannonier should be the next in line for a title shot, however he will have to get past Whittaker to earn it.
"I already messaged Jared Cannonier. He's a hell of a dude, I love his energy, he's a beautiful man, and I said 'if you destroy Robert Whittaker, you're next.'
"He's the one I want to fight next. He deserves it. If he beats Robert Whittaker handily and dominates him, he's next."