Israel Adesanya and Alex Pereira are set to face each other for the third time in their careers and for the first time in an MMA bout inside a UFC octagon. The two will duel it out for the middleweight championship at UFC 281 at Madison Square Garden.
A driving point in their upcoming championship bout has been their past meetings during their kickboxing days. In two kickboxing fights, Pereira has triumphed over the UFC middleweight champion. It helped 'Poatan' shape the title charge on the basis of his past victories over Adesanya.
Pereira's two wins also constituted the only knockout loss of Adesanya's professional career. The Brazilian recently shared footage of the aftermath of his second knockout win on Twitter. In the video, Pereira's son is seen mocking 'The Last Stylebender' as he recovers from his knockout.
Alex Pereira wrote in his tweet that it wasn't his intention to have his son, Alessandro, inside the ring but acknowledged his hilarious actions. He tweeted:
"I told them before not to let him in the ring [laughing emoji] (my son Alessandro after I knocked Adesanya out)."
Check out Alessandro Pereira mimicking Adesanya's knockout:
Israel Adesanya vows to take revenge against Alex Pereira
For Israel Adesanya, his middleweight title defense against Alex Pereira at UFC 281 is a chance to redeem himself on his preferred canvas. After two defeats in kickboxing, he will look to turn the tables against 'Poatan' in MMA.
After the fight's announcement, he took to Instagram to declare his intentions of avenging his past losses. He captioned his post:
"📖😈 #UFC281 "Vengeance is mine says the lord.” Brooooo I said the same thing too!! This ends here. Kill or be killed ⚔️"
Check out Adesanya's Instragram post:
It is clear that 'The Last Stylebender' is treating his upcoming fight as more than just a title defense. He has already proven himself to be the best middleweight in the world with five successful title defenses and an undefeated record in the weight class. His only loss came after he moved to light heavyweight in a bid to be a double champion.
His Brazilian opponent, however, refused to be sucked into the grudge match and took the moral high ground in response to Israel Adesanya's declaration of revenge. Alex Pereira referenced the middleweight champion's caption on Instagram and rather indifferently captioned his own post:
"Revenge is never full, it kills the soul and poisons."
Check out Alex Pereira's Instagram post: