Alex Pereira’s debut performance this weekend as part of the UFC 268 event is a bit in the shadows. Two belt fights and performances by fighters such as Justin Gaethje and Michael Chandler rightly attract almost all the attention.
However, Pereira has been renowned in recent years as one of the best, and by many, the best kickboxer in the world. The 34-year-old Brazilian ruled Glory's middleweight division for years (successfully defending the belt five times), and also reached the title in the light heavyweight division.
However, the wider audience also recognizes him as a fighter who twice defeated Israel Adesanya in kickboxing matches. Pereira is currently the only fighter ever to manage to knock out the current UFC middleweight champion.
That’s why Pereira’s transition to MMA and coming into the UFC middleweight division should attract a bit more attention. However, the Brazilian has only four professional MMA appearances (3-1-0), and the fight against Andreas Michaildis (13-4-0, 1-1 UFC) will be his debut for the world’s strongest MMA promotion.
There is a lot of work and proving in this sport in front of Pereira before he gets to a possible third match against Israel Adesanya. The Brazilian, however, points out that he did not come to the UFC because of that trilogy.
'' I didn't come here because of Adesanya. I came to become a champion. Who knows, maybe he won't be the champion until I attack the title, '' Pereira told the media ahead of the UFC 268 event and further described his ambitions.
'' I'm going step by step. I have just arrived in the organization and I am aiming for the title of champion. If I get there, and he’s still the champion, nice. If he is not there, I will work with those who are.
" The impression is that Alex Pereira doesn’t want to be a fighter living on the old glory and the fact that he celebrated twice against Adesanya. The Brazilian is a true fighter and competitor and is aware that this information does not mean much to him in building an MMA career.
'' It doesn't make any difference to me (victory over Adesanya). I beat the guy and those wins are part of my story. Maybe I would mind if I lost, '' Alex Pereira added. In any case, the debut of this spectacular kickboxer should not be missed.
His opponent Andreas Michailidis announced at a press conference that he plans to test Alex Pereira's grappling skills and it seems that they could get answers to some interesting questions about Alexa Pereira in the first match.