Alex Pereira confirms move to light heavyweight following UFC 287 title loss: ‘I’m going up’

Alex Pereira confirms move to light heavyweight after UFC 287 loss Israel Adesanya

Former undisputed UFC middleweight champion, Alex Pereira has confirmed plans to make a division climb to the light heavyweight limit for his next Octagon walk, following his championship loss to Israel Adesanya last weekend at UFC 287.

Taking main event status at the Miami, Florida pay-per-view event, Brazilian striker, Pereira suffered his first promotional loss in a championship rematch with arch-rival, Adesanya.

Winning the undisputed middleweight championship back in November of last year in the main event of UFC 281, Sao Paulo native, Pereira stopped Adesanya with a rallying performance at Madison Square Garden.

However, suffering his first loss to the Nigerian-Kiwi as part of their four-fight series at UFC 287 last weekend, Alex Pereira was stopped with a devastating second round KO from Adesanya in the ‘Sunshine State’ – with the latter chalking up his first victory over the now-former champion at the fourth time of trying.

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Alex Pereira confirms move to light heavyweight division

Linked with an immediate move to the light heavyweight limit of 205lbs for his next Octagon walk by UFC president, Dana White, Pereira has now confirmed he will test waters currently swam best by Jamahal Hill for his next Octagon outing.

“Hi, folks, like I promised, I’ll announce you big news on my channel,” Alex Pereira said on his YouTube channel. “My next fight will be in 205[lbs] [division]. Yeah, you heard right – my next fight will be in 205[lbs]. I think I did my work in 185 and now I’m feelin’ good to go up to 205. Like I told you, when I’m feeling good, I will go up – this will be something natural. And now I think it is.”

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Furthermore, Pereira claimed that if he wished to stay around at middleweight and pursue a title trilogy rubber match with Adesanya, the UFC would grant him that fight, however, he claimed the City Kickboxing native will not likely try to provoke him because he does not fight at middleweight anymore.

“… All of you saw the provocation from (Israel) Adesanya after the fight – he acts as if he has won against me three times,” Alex Pereira explained. “But it’s not like this. But I understand – or try to understand, the happiness he has. It was his dream to win one time against me. And now he did. But let’s see what will be his behavior. I’m going to light heavyweight because it’s a good option for me. But I’m sure if I stay in this division (middleweight), I can fight against him directly. Let’s see, how he behaves.” 

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Off the back of his middleweight title redemption at UFC 287, Adesanya was linked with a potential move to the light heavyweight limit himself, with head coach, Eugene Bareman weighing up a title outing against Jamahal Hill.

Furthermore, immediate title fight defenses against both the likes of Sean Strickland, and the surging Dricus du Plessis have also been floated since Adesanya’s championship victory last weekend.