Israel Adesanya settled an old score with Alex Pereira's son after the UFC 287 main-event on Saturday.
Pereira's son Alessandro got inside the ring and mimicked Adesanya's knockout loss to 'Poatan' back in 2017. 'The Last Stylebender' returned the favor after reclaiming his middleweight title with a second-round knockout win over Pereira in the main-event at UFC 287.
Adesanya sought out Pereira's son and mimicked the Brazilian getting knocked out.
Catch both clips below:
Israel Adesanya's antics were criticized by a large section of the MMA community who deemed them petty. Many believe 'The Last Stylebender' was not justified in exacting revenge from a child.
The UFC middleweight champion has now reacted to all the criticism against his post-fight celebration. Sharing a clip of both incidents with Pereira's son, Adesanya quoted Michael Jordan's iconic words:
“… and I took that personally.”
The aforementioned phrase, which was first used by Jordan in The Last Dance, an ESPN documentary covering the 1997-1998 Chicago Bulls, has now become a part of pop culture. The NBA legend used it to describe several moments from that season that he took personally and channelized as motivation for his great performances.
"I'm petty" - Israel Adesanya on the beef with Alex Pereira's son
Israel Adesanya had three losses against Alex Pereira going into UFC 287, including the aforementioned 2017 KO. Many, including 'Poatan' himself, believed it was unwise of Adesanya to have opted for an immediate rematch after losing his strap at UFC 281 last November.
However, 'The Last Stylebender' put a fairytale ending to the story by knocking out Pereira in the second round to conquer all his demons. Copying Pereira's celebration, the Kiwi coldly directed three arrows at 'Poatan' before going on to mock his son, who was left in tears.
Watch Alessandro's reaction in the tweet below:
It should be noted that Alessandro had no qualms revisiting the moment he mocked Adesanya ahead of his father's UFC 281 clash against the Kiwi.
Speaking about his revenge on Pereira's son, Adesanya admitted that he was petty enough to teach the kid an important lesson. The 33-year-old said:
“I’m petty. I remember. The first time he knocked me out in Brazil, his son came into the ring and then just started to lie dead next to me. I’m like, ‘You f****** little a******, I’ll whoop your ass if your dad don’t do it for you.’ I looked for his kid, I pointed at him, and I saw him and I was like, ‘Hey, hey, hey,’ just to remind him."
Catch Israel Adesanya's comments below: