Du Plessis: "The decision to back out of the fight at UFC 300 was hard for me."

UFC middleweight champion Dricus Du Plessis revealed why he couldn't accept an offer to fight former titleholder Israel Adesanya at the UFC 300 anniversary event.

"Once you become a champion, then you no longer have to risk your health and take fights with short notice. Since it's not an opportunity for you to get something worthwhile, it's a chance for a challenger to become champion. I turned down a fight with Izzy that was supposed to take place at UFC 300. That decision was a tough one for me because it's a unique privilege to be headlining such a tournament.

It's worth clarifying one point. Izzy says he got a call offering to fight me at UFC 300, but that's not true. You will be offered a fight with me when I want it," Low Kick MMA quoted Du Plessis as saying.

It was previously reported that Du Plessis and Adesanya could headline the UFC 305 show scheduled for August 18 in Perth, Australia.