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You Need to Watch This UFC Fighter Dance His Way to the Ring

Israel Adesanya is a gifted Nigerian-New Zealander mixed martial artist who, on Saturday night, became the Ultimate Fighting Championship's middleweight champion.

But why are we, over here at Dance Spirit, obsessed with Adesanya? Because he's also a really, really great dancer. And on Saturday—after a long battle with UFC officials outside the ring—he was finally allowed to show off his dance skills during a fight entrance.


The UFC is apparently "notoriously no fun" about fighter entrances, frowning on WWE-style video packages and theatrics. But Adesanya, who actually started out as a dancer and came to fighting relatively late, pushed for months to loosen the rules.

The result was Saturday night's instantly iconic walk-out:

MMA experts have noted that Adesanya's dance skills work to his advantage in the ring, too: He's a fighter of singular grace and finesse.

"You gotta realize this is the spectacle, this is a big stadium," Adesanya said at Saturday's post-fight press conference. "I have to give them a show and set the tone. And there's no one like me. No one."

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Daphne Boutin, Courtesy Keflezgy

Hip-Hop Choreographer Luam Is Using Her Voice to Spark Change

Having taught around the world and created for the likes of Beyoncé, Rihanna and Alicia Keys, Luam Keflezgy has established herself as one of the most respected choreographers in the dance industry. Her recognition stems from not only her creative expertise, but her flawless ability to use movement as a vessel for her unique voice.

Today, Luam is leading by example by brilliantly leveraging her social media following to highlight racial injustices within the dance industry. She has hosted IG live convos with artists like Martha Nichols, Phillip Chbeeb and Tony Tzar, tackling topics surrounding mental health, ally-ship and cultural appropriation. Luam also hosts her own podcast called Industry Talk that continues to spark conversations surrounding the dance and hip-hop community.

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