Israel Adesanya was previously the undisputed Middleweight Champion of the UFC. He successfully defended his title five times in a row till his long-standing opponent Alex Pereira knocked him out in the fifth round in November 2022. The loss was excruciating for “The Last Stylebender,” which had already performed better as per the judges.
Adesanya severely injured the Brazilian in the opening round and used grappling to win rounds and score points, making the best UFC fight night odds. Beginning the fifth round, “The Last Stylebender” would win unanimously. However, Pereira utilized his amazing strength to score a surprising technical knockout and hand Adesanya his first middleweight MMA loss.
How Adesanya handles this setback will be fascinating to observe. In 2021, he was defeated by Blachowicz, which makes sense given that he was attempting to win another championship at a bigger weight class. Even though Adesanya has a robust ego, his third loss against Pereira is devastating.
Adesanya is now 0-3 versus Pereira. The former UFC middleweight champion is disappointed that the bout was stopped, but he remains optimistic because he knows they will fight again.
Adesanya Wanted a Rematch
Adesanya stated, “I will still fight him. Even if he was going to fight someone else and lost the belt, I’ll still fight him next. I will battle against him. I hope he’s the champion, but I’d still fight him if I had to guess.”
UFC president Dana White stated that the rematch between Alex Pereira and Israel Adesanya would occur. The second fight will occur in Miami, Florida, at UFC 287. On April 8, the two long-standing adversaries will rematch in the Octagon, with the UFC Middleweight Championship on the line in the main event.
In a video posted on social media, UFC President Dana White revealed the participants in this fight. Adesanya versus Pereira is, of course, the night’s major event. At least two or three of the fights on that card will cause people to take a second look.
This will be Israel Adesanya’s final opportunity to reclaim the belt he lost or demonstrate that he cannot defeat the only opponent who has defeated him twice by TKO in separate sports. But the brawl that precedes this one is also very entertaining to see.
The rematch would be the first time Pereira has defended his title since he defeated Adesanya in the fifth round in November to reclaim it. Pereira and Adesanya clashed for the third time in their most recent bout. Pereira has won his first Professional Kickboxing match. In the co-main event, Jorge Masvidal will fight Gilbert Burns in the Welterweight division for the first bout in a year.
Adesanya Still Favorite
It is difficult to defeat the champion, especially someone as talented as Pereira, but the challenger is in a better position here. Adesanya controlled the battle until the final round. He ranks among the greatest strikers in UFC history.
Pereira pinned him against the cage and landed several massive blows, sufficient to knock him out.
Pereira is still the underdog, according to oddsmakers, despite his 3-0 lead over Adesanya. Adesanya is the favorite with odds of -145, while Pereira is the underdog with odds of +125, according to most odds.
Adesanya is a genuinely unusual combat athlete. He is comparable to Muhammad Ali and Roy Jones Jr. in that he possesses outstanding athletic abilities and charisma. Adesanya is a prime illustration of the moment in which he excels and will undoubtedly be Gen Z’s favorite UFC fighter.
Adesanya has always been overcome within his weight class. He has defeated notable opponents, including Derek Brunson, Paulo Costa, Marvin Vettori (twice), Robert Whittaker, and Yoel Romero, throughout his three-a-half years in the UFC.
Pereira dealt Adesanya his first defeat in the middleweight division. Before losing his kickboxing title to an opponent who had already defeated him twice, the previous champion defended it five times. Adesanya will now attempt to regain his title by defeating Pereira in their fourth bout.
Adesanya is in a precarious position unless he proves he can defeat Pereira. First time in three years that he is not the middleweight champion. Some individuals may have believed that he would be upset by the loss, but “The Last Stylebender” claimed it was simply another step on his quest.