Israel Adesanya was impressed by Alex Pereira’s KO win at UFC 268.
Pereira is a decorated kickboxer who holds a decision and a KO win over Adesanya who is the current middleweight champ. With that, many expect Pereira to be rushed to the title shot, and for Adesanya, he says the fight was very similar to him vs. Derek Brunson, where the Brazilian’s opponent didn’t want to strike with him but eventually did get caught.
“It’s pretty much like me and (Derek) Brunson, he’s trying to find a way (to take him down) cause he’s scared of the striking,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “Cause you know he’s going to shoot, well-timed knee just straight up. Bang. There it is. I thought he was going to do it when he shot in, but I didn’t think he was going to fly at him.”
With Alex Pereira winning in highlight-reel fashion, Israel Adesanya hopes the Brazilian continues his run so he can meet him. The plan for “The Last Stylebender” is to fight him in the next four fights and prove he was young and inexperienced in kickboxing and is much better now in his career.
“We talked about this like two days ago. We need something new. Especially after you lap the division again. … Good job Pereira, that was nice. One thing I notice is everyone always holds on to that win he has over me like it’s the be all end all. I hope he does well. I hope he does well through the ranks,” Pereira said. “In the next four fights, I hope to see him. They’ll show you the knockout, but they won’t show you what happened before the finish. I hurt him, but I only throw (hands) because I was infiltrated by other people’s thoughts. But that was when I was younger. Not anymore. It’s different now. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
Cole Shelton covers MMA for BJPenn.com, MMANews, and MyMMANews.com while also being the lead MMA odds writer for Sports Betting Dime