Adesanya Loses Bout to Pereira
By Rebecca Rodriguez - December 2, 2022

Alex Pereira has only competed four times in the UFC, yet he already holds the title of middleweight champion. To accomplish this, he had to go past Israel Adesanya, a middleweight boxer who had won all his fights and successfully defended his belt five times. But after all, was said and done, Pereira’s renowned punching strength turned out to be the decisive factor. Overall, UFC 281 was a thrilling occasion with many memorable moments. There’s a lot to unravel here, so let’s start immediately!

As a two-division champion in Glory Kickboxing, Pereira started to rely more heavily in the first round on the body and calf kicks that made him successful. After a while, Adesanya decided to body lock Pereira and start wearing him down. After Pereira was surprised and forced to stumble back to his corner, Adesanya delivered a powerful overhand right to end the fight. The second round belonged to Pereira. Adesanya could not dodge his first series of well-timed left jabs that he landed. He later used his feet to land an audible left-footed head kick. A takedown capped off the fight’s outstanding middle half by Pereira just before the final horn.

Getty images/UFC/Jeff Bottari / Contributor

Adesanya gained a takedown early in the first round. It may seem unbelievable, but this was Adesanya’s first takedown victory since joining the UFC roster. Incredibly, The Last Stylebender has developed such masterful striking skills that he has not had to try a takedown until his sixth title defense attempt. For various sections of the round, Adesanya employed a ground-and-pound strategy and completely controlled the situation.

I was immediately brought back to UFC 278 when Kamaru Usman was knocked out in the fifth and final round by Leon Edwards. Like Adesanya, Usman appeared to be on track for a successful championship defense until things worsened in the final round. Despite fighting courageously, Adesanya was affected by Pereira’s punches, especially in the last round. Despite being a relative newcomer to mixed martial arts, Alex Pereira has already achieved success through his commitment to the discipline. To put it mildly, the middleweight division’s future was much more fascinating!