Once, in 2016, Adesanya faced Pereira in a kickboxing match for Glory. After three competitive rounds, Adesanya lost a controversial decision to the Brazilian fighter, and a year later the two faced off again at Glory of Heroes 7. This time there was no controversy as Pereira knocked Adesanya down in the third round. their battles. The Ultimate Steelbender ended his kickboxing career and sent him into MMA full-time.
Now, five years later and in a different sport, Adesanya finally got his revenge.
Pereira is under contract with the UFC in 2021 and the promotion has made no secret of its intention to rush for a title fight with Adesanya. And it happened. Pereira knocked out Andrea Mihailidis in his debut, stopped second-year Bruno Silva by unanimous decision and reversed a stunning KO of Strickland to earn his chance in the middleweight division. Although it was shorter than the one here, the fight was the most exciting challenge for Adesanya in a long time.
The UFC Saturday Match
UFC: Israel Adesanya is minutes away from defending his title against Alex Pereira – on the official UFC 281 fight card.
middleweight champion Adesanya was looking to make the sixth defence of his title in the main event at Madison Square Garden but was unable to do so after being knocked out in the fifth round by former kickboxing rival Pereira. “The Last Steelbender” did a great job of draining knockout artist Pereira’s gas tank by mixing up his fights in the early stages.
Adesanya was on pace to match UFC legend Anderson Silva’s record for most consecutive wins in middleweight history (12), but Pereira stopped him from doing so. Adesanya was beaten twice by Brazil in kickboxing before Pereyra, as the former champion was also brutally knocked out in the 2017 bout.
Analysis of the winner
Alex Pereira went 3-0 in the sport against Israel Adesanya with a knockout victory in the main event of UFC 281.
One thing that impressed me about Pereyra’s approach to the first four rounds of this fight was how he closed the gap and supported Adesanya against the fence. More interestingly, Pereira has nothing to do with his superiority in the area. He seemed willing to step up and fight patiently. Sitting in those spots, Pereira threw caution to the wind and didn’t let the flow strike.
If I had to guess why Pereira holds this position, he’s unfamiliar with what it takes to go five rounds in a high-profile MMA fight. Close in the first 20 minutes, Pereyra remained good enough in the fifth round to close the gap and throw Adesanya’s back against the fence with full force and aggression, leading to his UFC middleweight title.
Israel Adesanya defeated
Israel Adesanya fought well on Saturday, but one thing that worried me throughout the tournament was his desire to fight in the cage and back. He was able to do that in the first four rounds because Alex Pereira was unfamiliar with five-round MMA fights, but while Pereira was not losing by emptying the tank, this approach cost Adesanya money.
Preview The Ultimate Fighting
The championship (UFC) returns on Sunday with two highly anticipated championship bouts. at UFC 281 in New York’s Madison Square Garden.
In the co-main event, UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya tries to square off with former kickboxing foe and No. 5 ranked contender Alex Pereira.
Adesanya fought Pereira twice in kickboxing in 2016 and 2017, losing both times.
In the co-main event, UFC women’s bantamweight champion Carla Esparza is aiming for her first title shot against defending champion and No. 2 contenders Zhang Weil.
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