Alex Pereira didn’t have the right preparation heading into his UFC 281 title fight against Israel Adesanya.
Pereira became the UFC’s new middleweight champion with a fifth-round TKO of Adesanya. He was down on the scorecards heading into the final round but landed some power shots against the cage and the ref jumped in to stop the fight.
Although Pereira got his hand raised, he is confident he can have a better performance in a rematch against Adesanya. As, according to the Brazilian, he was dealing with a hand injury.
“I didn’t train very well for this fight. I could have been better,” Pereira said to ESPN. “But I won, I became champion. A lot of people talk nonsense and don’t know what was going on. I [tore] the ligaments. I think I can come back better for this next fight.”
With Alex Pereira pulling off the upset and beating Israel Adesanya, it is likely the two will rematch due to how long ‘The Last Stylebender’ was the champ.
However, Pereira still isn’t sure if Adesanya will take an immediate rematch or take some time off. But, for the Brazilian, he is confident he will have success against whoever he fights next whether or not it is against Adesanya.
“It doesn’t matter to me whether he or another will come,” Pereira said. “If I were him, I would wait a bit, but since he wants to … he was the champion. If he really wants that, he deserves this rematch. It was a good fight. He hit me, he believes he can beat me. It doesn’t matter to me, I’ll fight. If there are two people, Adesanya and someone else, and you say who I want, I’ll say ‘Adesanya.’ Because he is him.”
What do you make of Alex Pereira saying he had an injured hand in his fight against Israel Adesanya?