Alex Pereira switched weight classes after losing to Israel Adesanya in the middleweight title fight in the recently concluded UFC 287 last week. After just four minutes and 21 seconds of the second round of the intense bout, the 35-year-old was knocked out. Pereira however, had emerged victorious in the last three fights against Israel Adesanya.
Pereira declared on YouTube that he was switching weight classes to the light heavyweight category following the defeat. The fighter will now be playing in the 205-pound category instead of his usual 185-pound category. The 35-year-old further clarified that this decision was not taken because he is unable to compete in the middleweight.
In his native Portuguese, Pereira added, "Many people questioned [my weight cut], but I always got there and completed my duty, but now is a fantastic chance to move up a division."
After a remarkable kickboxing career wherein he fought at 185 and 205 pounds, the 35-year-old Pereira fully dedicated to mixed martial arts in 2020. Shortly after his instructor and mentor Glover Teixeira won the light heavyweight title, Pereira, who had been signed to the UFC, made his promotional debut. He had a legitimate incentive to continue with middleweight, considering that he was already certain he could win, given those circumstances and his background with Adesanya.
Fans definitely want to see a last match between Israel Adesanya and Alex Pereira, but Potans's options at 205 pounds are also quite appealing. Given how many strikers and brawlers are present in the category, it will be fascinating to see if a kickboxer of Pereira's calibre can proceed and challenge for the title in a different weight division.