Israel Adesanya Issues Apology for Crude 9/11 Reference in Trash Talk With Yoel Romero

Israel Adesayna apologized for his vulgar reference to 9/11
Israel Adesayna apologized for his vulgar reference to 9/11 /

There are certain lines that professional athletes (or anyone claiming to stand for decency) just cannot cross, even in the midst of trying to intimidate an opponent and cut him down to size. Unfortunately, UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya leapt far beyond that treshold in the most vulgar of fashions last week.

Previewing his title fight against Yoel Romero at UFC 248 on March 7, Adesanya said that he would make his opponent "crumble like the Twin Towers," a highly problematic reference to the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center towers in New York that killed over 3,000 people.

In the face of essentially universal criticism, the Nigerian-born New Zealander followed with a much-needed apology.

It will simply never be okay for anybody to allude to 9/11 so casually and carelessly. Adesanya, who is generally admired for his professionalism during press engagements, used his Instagram story to take responsibility for his irresponsible, unacceptable choice of words.

Amid the oodles of backlash "The Last Stylebender" received for his crude utterances, UFC middleweight contender Paulo Costa fired off a particularly NSFW tirade.

Whoever prevails in the main event on March 7 is almost certain to face Costa in a subsequent title defense, adding additional stakes to what is already a difficult, embarrassing situation.

It's quite apparent that Adesanya just didn't realize what he was saying, as his glaring stumble felt truly out of character. However, his mistake only added another layer of hostility to his upcoming clash with Romero with UFC 248 just a few weeks away.