Eugene Bareman on an Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira rematch: “No other fight makes sense.”

Eugene Bareman, Israel Adesanya

Following the historic title bout at UFC 281 between Israel Adesanya and Alex Pereira, there are questions as to what is next for the middleweight division, as well as whether Israel Adesanya will get the chance to regain the belt that he once defended six times in a row.

At Madison Square Garden in November, Alex Pereira captured the 185-pound title from longtime foe Israel Adesanya, which happened to be their third time facing off in combat sports (first in MMA). Given that Adesanya has never beaten Pereira, there are many opinions on whether or not Adesanya should get the immediate chance to get revenge in the octagon.

In a recent interview with Submission Radio, City Kickboxing and Adesanya’s longtime coach Eugene Bareman vouches for an immediate rematch with Pereira, stating:

“At the end of the day, it can only go that way right, like you get a champion that does the sort of service that he’s done for the company, defended that many times that frequently… you have to give the man the rematch. He wants that rematch, there’s no other choice. What else could you do? No other fight makes sense.”

Bareman continues on this topic, reaffirming, “In the middleweight division, I still think that’s the biggest fight.”

Bareman on rumors of Khamzat Chimaev getting the next title shot over Israel Adesanya

Bareman also addressed recent rumors that the surging Khamzat Chimaev would be Alex Pereira’s first title defense.

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“Khamzat’s a rising star but he’s literally done nothing at middleweight so he hasn’t established himself. We’re talking about two guys (Adesanya and Pereira) at the top of the food chain in terms of their status in combat sports. Khamzat is a rising star, he’s a massive rising star, but he’s not in the position of these two guys. This is the biggest fight and Khamzat has to beat people at middleweight to work his way up to even fighting one of these guys.”

One of the UFC’s budding stars, Khamzat “Borz” Chimaev, has quickly built immense momentum and has been rumored to get the next opportunity at the 185 title to face Alex Pereira. There are many opinions on this idea, however, Eugene Bareman has some thoughts to offer on why it is too early for Chimaev:

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“Unless the politics and business of the sport take over, that’s still the biggest fight to make… and at the end of the day it’s not Alex’s choice to make you know, it will be Alex’s choice when he makes X amount of title defenses and does well for the company and all that, then it will be Alex’s choice.”

Clearly, Bareman strongly believes that a fourth match in the story of Adesanya-Pereira looms on the horizon, and thinks that the result will be different when they meet again in the octagon:

“We don’t have to extensively re-invent the wheel in my opinion, we have to just tweak a few things and we can turn that fight around…I just don’t anticipate we need to do a hell of a lot; I’ll just have to change a couple tactics…”

A fourth match between the two rivals will be one of the most anticipated events in combat sports if Adesanya were to be granted the immediate rematch. Do you think Israel should be given the rematch straight away, or should a fresh face like Chimaev be given the opportunity?

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Watch the full interview with City Kickboxing’s Eugene Bareman here:

Do you want to see an immediate rematch between Israel Adesanya and Alex Pereira?