Israel Adesanya had already put his next opponent on notice before he stepped into the cage to fight Paulo Costa.
Adesanya picked apart the muscled Brazilian inside two rounds to retain his UFC middleweight title in Abu Dhabi.
The Nigerian-born New Zealander attacked his challenger’s legs from the start before dropping and finishing him.
And Adesanya revealed he had already messaged Jared Cannonier about a future fight.
“I had to remind the world we’re the best,” the champion said.
“Anderson Silva lived a great legacy and I want to do service to the middleweight division. That’s a hard act to follow but we’re doing the work.
“I already DM’d Jared Cannonier; he’s a hell of a dude, I love his energy, he’s a beautiful man. I said, you destroy Robert Whittaker and you’re next
“He’s the one I want to fight next, he deserves it. If he beats Robert Whittaker handily and destroys him, he’s next.”
Whittaker and Cannonier are due to clash on October 24 in the co-main event to Khabib Nurmagomedov’s lightweight title defence against Justin Gaethje.
Adesanya added: “I’m not a human punching bag and he’s only fought human punching bags.
“After the first round I was so fresh; I looked over and I could see him sitting down.
“They want me to stand there so he could punch me but I’m not stupid.
“I said before I went out that I was going to have fun in there; I was going to be smart and systematic and tactical but I’d have fun in there and I did.”