'It's kind of fun' — Israel Adesanya in good spirits after first defeat, ready to 'rise like a phoenix'

Israel Adesanya and his team have humbly accepted defeat after the Kiwi UFC star's unbeaten record ended yesterday.

Adesanya lost to Polish fighter Jan Blachowicz in their light heavyweight title fight, which the Kiwi went up a weight group for.

"It's kind of fun," Adesanya said after the fight.

"This is the dip in my story, you know what I mean. The valley, if you will. And I'll rise up like the phoenix that I am."

The bout in Las Vegas was going the distance, however two late takedowns cost the New Zealander.

"To the winner goes all the spoils of war, so Jan, this is his night, he gets to celebrate, it's his title," said Adesanya's coach, Eugene Bareman.

"We have to eat some humble pie, head down and go back and reassess, back to New Zealand and do what we do best, which is come back from losses. That's something we are really good at."

Adesanya's focus is now back on dominating his favoured middleweight class.