Israel Adesanya heaps praise on Alex Pereira amid rivalry: ‘He’s a special human being, I’ll always respect him’

Israel Adesanya heaps praise on special human being Alex Pereira I'll always respect him

Sharing a four-fight rivalry with Alex Pereira throughout their decorated combat sports career, Israel Adesanya claims he will always respect the UFC light heavyweight champion amid their series of clashes, describing the Brazilian as a “special human being”.

Adesanya, a former two-time undisputed middleweight champion, has been sidelined since he headlined UFC 293 back in September of last year against common-foe, Sean Strickland, dropping a one-sided unanimous decision loss.

Alex Pereira weighs up Manchester fight with Tom Aspinall at UFC 304 I'm there

As for Sao Paulo knockout artist, Pereira, the former two-division champion headlined UFC 300 just earlier this month, dispatching the returning, Jamahal Hill with a devastating opening round KO win in Las Vegas.

Israel Adesanya praises arch-enemy, Alex Pereira

And expected to share the Octagon with incumbent middleweight champion, Dricus du Plessis in a return to championship settings at UFC 305 in August, Adesanya claims that despite his distinct, and often heated rivalry with four-fight foe, Pereira, he can’t but admit the Brazilian will always have his respect.

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Israel Adesanya picks Jamahal Hill to beat Alex Pereira by KO in UFC 300 title fight
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“Honestly, he’s (Alex Pereira) a special fighter,” Israel Adesanya said during an appearance on MightyCast. “He’s a special human being. What he’s done in this game, in fighting and for his life, as well, I’ll always respect him. I’m grateful for those moments for me, it taught me so much about myself and where I can go.”

“Same with the Kelvin Gastelum fight, it let me know I can go more,” Israel Adesanya explained. “That one, I was ready to die, but this one, I just knew, ‘There’s no f*cking way, this guy, I swear to God, I will die… fourth time’s a charm.”

GETTY UFC 287 Pereira v Adesanya 2 SPO GYI1480906107jpg JS808759612 1
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Weighing up his fighting future off the back of his blistering win over Hill earlier this month atop UFC 300, Pereira has welcomed the chance to return in a heavyweight first inside the Octagon, amid links to a spectacular UFC 304 clash in July in a showdown against Tom Aspinall.

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Do you think Alex Pereira will share the Octagon with Israel Adesanya again?