Alex Pereira Retains UFC Light Heavyweight Title with First Round Knockout of Jamahal Hill

Alex Pereira is keeping his title…

The 36-year-old Brazilian professional mixed martial artist and former kickboxer knocked out former champ Jamahal Hill on Saturday to retain the UFC light heavyweight title in the main event of UFC 300 — one of the biggest events in promotion history — at T-Mobile Arena.

Alex Pereira, The finish came at 3 minutes, 14 seconds of the first round after one of Pereira’s trademark left hooks.

The finish will live on highlight reels forever.

Hill kicked Pereira low, prompting referee Herb Dean to step in and try to pause the fight. Pereira held up his right hand, stopping the official from intervening. Pereira then blasted Hill with the left hook and followed with violent punches on the ground.

“I was gauging the distance and timing,” Pereira said through an interpreter. “Everything went perfect.”

Pereira said the groin kick hurt him a little, but he was just starting to figure out that distance and didn’t want to have to reset if the bout was paused. UFC CEO Dana White lauded Pereira not only for the performance but also the style points he gained for how it ended.

“He got hit in the groin,” White said. “He was like, ‘Nuh uh,’ [to Dean] and then knocks [Hill] out. … That was incredibly gangster.”

Pereira landed 24 of 30 significant strikes, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

He has landed 63% of his significant strikes in UFC, which is the fourth-best mark in the promotion’s history. Pereira has eight knockouts in 10 career wins.

Hill relinquished the title last summer after rupturing his left Achilles tendon in a pickup basketball game. Pereira won the vacant belt by knocking out former champ Jiří Procházka in November at UFC 295 in New York.

Coming in, ESPN had Pereira ranked No. 3 in its pound-for-pound rankings.

Afterward, Pereira said he wanted to get right back in the Octagon and fight at UFC 301 on May 4 in his native Brazil. Pereira said he would like to do so at heavyweight, which would be his third weight class in UFC.

“I want this fight,” Pereira said. “I’m not hurt. Nothing happened.”

That wasn’t completely true. White said Pereira suffered a broken toe while training for the fight.

“I had to just push through,” Pereira said.

White said Pereira should probably pump the brakes on a move up in weight.

“The heavyweight division is nasty,” White said. “I don’t know if that’s the right move for him. He looked damn good tonight in the division he’s in.”

Pereira (10-2) is the quickest fighter to win two UFC titles in two divisions (seven fights). The Connecticut resident knocked out Israel Adesanya to win the UFC middleweight title in 2022 before dropping the title back to Adesanya last year.

Pereira is a former two-division champion in Glory Kickboxing and a Hall of Famer in that promotion.

Hill (12-1, 1 NC) had won four straight coming in. The Chicago native, who fights out of Michigan, beat Glover Teixeira, Pereira’s coach and training partner, to win the UFC light heavyweight title at UFC 283 in January 2023. Hill, 32, was the first Dana White’s Contender Series alum to win a UFC championship.

“I don’t let this belt go to my head,” Pereira said. “I have to go in here and win this belt every time to be champion.”

Alex Pereira to Defend His UFC Light Heavyweight Title Against Jamahal Hill at UFC 300

Alex Pereira is going on the defensive…

The 36-year-old Brazilian mixed martial artist and former kickboxer will defend his UFC light heavyweight title against former champion Jamahal Hill in the UFC 300 headliner on April 13 in Las Vegas, UFC CEO Dana White has announced.

Alex Pereira ESPN has Pereira ranked No. 7 on its pound-for-pound list.

Pereira (9-2) is the former UFC middleweight champion, and he was the quickest to win two divisional titles in UFC history (seven fights).

The Brazilian knockout artist stopped Jiri Prochazka via TKO to win the 205-pound belt at UFC 295 in November. Pereira knocked out Israel Adesanya in November 2022 to win the middleweight title before dropping the belt back to Adesanya in April.

Hill (12-1, 1 NC) has been out due to a torn Achilles tendon. He never lost the light heavyweight title but relinquished the belt last summer due to the injury. Hill, a 32-year-old Chicago native, has won four straight, and he beat Glover Teixeira to win the title in January 2023.

Pereira vs. Hill is the third title fight added to the card. Justin Gaethje will put his BMF belt on the line against Max Holloway, and Zhang Weili will defend the UFC women’s strawweight title against Yan Xiaonan.

Alex Pereira Becomes Fastest MMA Fighter to Two Championships in UFC History

Alex Pereira is making swift championship moves…

The 36-year-old Brazilian professional mixed martial artist and former kickboxer has claimed the vacant UFC light heavyweight championship after stopping Jiri Prochazka via TKO at 4:08 of the second round on Saturday night in the main event of UFC 295 at Madison Square Garden.

Alex Pereira,Pereira, who has been in the UFC for just two years, has now won championships in two weight classes.

Pereira is the ninth two-division champion in UFC history. He was previously the UFC middleweight champion earlier this year.

Pereira is the fastest to two championships in UFC history, doing it in just seven UFC fights. No other fighter has won titles at middleweight and light heavyweight.

“It’s incredible,” UFC CEO Dana White said in the post-fight news conference. “I don’t know about an all-time great [yet]. But it’s incredibly impressive what he’s done in a short amount of time.”

Pereira dropped Prochazka with a left hook with Pereira’s back against the cage. Prochazka was clearly hurt, and Pereira fell right into mount, landing punches and elbows in the process. Prochazka seemed to still be fighting back, but referee Marc Goddard stopped the bout. Some fans booed at the stoppage.

“I’m not surprised after the first left hook,” Pereira said in his post-fight interview. “He fell down on my legs, and I looked for the finish. I don’t think it was a bad stoppage.”

Prochazka said he agreed with the stoppage.

“I think it was right,” he said. “I was out. But you know, I will never stop.”

The UFC light heavyweight title has had a rough stretch since Jon Jones, the division’s all-time best fighter, voluntarily gave up the championship before moving to heavyweight. Perhaps Pereira will bring stability.

Prochazka vacated the belt in late 2022 due to a severe shoulder injury. Jamahal Hill then won it by beating Glover Teixeira in January. But Hill tore an Achilles tendon in July and had to relinquish the title.

ESPN had Pereira ranked No. 2 in the division coming into Saturday.

Afterward, Pereira called out Israel Adesanya to move up to light heavyweight and face him. Pereira and Adesanya have split their two meetings in the UFC, and Pereira has beaten him twice in kickboxing. It’s more likely Hill will be next for Pereira when Hill recovers.

Adesanya, who loss the middleweight title to Sean Strickland at UFC 293 in Australia, said last month that he is “not going to fight for a long time.”

“He doesn’t seem motivated and I think it’s a fight everybody would like to see,” Pereira said of Adesanya.

Pereira dropped Prochazka with a leg kick in the first round. Prochazka came back with a takedown late in the first and did some damage with elbows. Pereira continued to work the leg kicks in the second round, leading into the finish.

“He knew it. He kept kicking that leg,” White said. “And that leg was going to be a problem as the fight went on. The kicking power. The punching power. He moves like a middleweight. He’s pretty nasty.”

Pereira (9-2), a training partner of Teixeira, is the only fighter to headline back-to-back UFC cards at Madison Square Garden. The Brazilian-born fighter, who lives and trains in Connecticut, knocked out Adesanya to win the UFC middleweight title at MSG in November 2022.

Pereira is a former two-division Glory Kickboxing champion and was recently inducted into that promotion’s Hall of Fame. He is now 3-0 at MSG.

“It’s my house here now,” Pereira said of the Garden. “How do I get the key?”

Prochazka (29-4-1) had won 13 straight fights, including his first three in the UFC by finish. The Czech Republic native beat Teixeira to win the UFC light heavyweight title in June 2022. Prochazka, 31, is the former light heavyweight champion of Japan’s Rizin promotion.

Alex Pereira to Face Rival Israel Adesanya in Fourth Fight

Alex Pereira is going on the defensive…

The 35-year-old Brazilian professional mixed martial artist and former kickboxer will defend his middleweight championship back in a fourth fight against rival against Israel Adesanya this spring.

Alex PereiraPereira and Adesanya will face each other in the co-main event of UFC 287 on April 8, UFC president Dana White has announced.

Jorge Masvidal will return against Gilbert Burns in the other co-main event, while popular welterweight Kevin Holland will take on Santiago Ponzinibbio on the main card, White said.

A location for UFC 287 has yet to be announced.

Perira has beaten Adesanya twice in kickboxing and knocked him out last November in the fifth round of their first MMA fight against one another at UFC 281 to win the belt.

Adesanya is No. 4 in ESPN‘s pound-for-pound rankings.

Pereira (7-1) is 4-0 in the UFC with three victories via KO/TKO. The Brazilian-born fighter, who trains out of Connecticut, only started his full-time MMA career in 2020. Pereira, 35, was once one of the best kickboxers in the world, holding Glory titles at middleweight and light heavyweight.

Adesanya (23-2) had been the UFC middleweight champion since 2019 prior to Pereira’s victory. The Nigerian-born New Zealander had only one MMA loss prior to November, at light heavyweight in a 2021 title fight against Jan Blachowicz.

Adesanya, 33, had five successful middleweight title defenses.

Masvidal (35-16) has lost three straight but remains one of the biggest stars on the UFC roster. The 38-year-old Miami native owns the fastest knockout in UFC history — a five-second flying knee win over Ben Askren in 2019.

Burns (21-5), a 36-year-old former title contender from Brazil who trains out of Florida, is coming off a first-round submission victory over Neil Magny on Saturday at UFC 283.

Alex Pereira Defeats Israel Adesanya via TKO to Claim UFC Middleweight Title

Alex Pereira has pulled off a massive upset…

The 35-year-old Brazilian professional mixed martial artist and former kickboxer stopped Israel Adesanya via TKO at 2 minutes, 1 second of the fifth and final round this weekend in the main event of UFC 281 at Madison Square Garden.

Alex Pereira With the victory, Pereira won the UFC middleweight title in just his fourth fight with the promotion. Adesanya had been the champion since 2019.

Adesanya had been winning the fight until the final sequence, with Pereira firing a barrage of punches with Adesanya hurt against the cage. Referee Marc Goddard stepped in to stop it after a flurry of left hooks and right hands, though Adesanya was never dropped.

Pereira said that in his corner before the fifth round, his coaches and his MMA mentor Glover Teixeira, the former UFC light heavyweight champion, “kept it real” with him.

“I said, ‘Do I have to knock him out?'” Pereira said through an interpreter. “Glover said, ‘You do have to knock him out.’ I said, ‘OK, let’s do it.'”

Pereira and Adesanya fought twice before in kickboxing, with Pereira winning both times, the most recent a 2017 knockout of Adesanya.

“It’s another great story for him, but it’s not over,” Adesanya said. “This is still war.”

Coming in, ESPN had Adesanya ranked No. 2 on its pound-for-pound list of best MMA fighters. At middleweight, Adesanya was No. 1, and Pereira was ranked No. 7.

All three judges had Adesanya ahead 39-37 going into the fifth round, with Adesanya winning every round except the second. There were similar circumstances in their second kickboxing match, with Adesanya dominating the first two rounds before Pereira knocked him out in the third.

“F—ing crazy, isn’t it?” Adesanya said. “Similar to the last time — same story.”

In the first round on Saturday, Adesanya rocked Pereira at the end, and a wobbly Pereira was essentially saved by the bell. Pereira came back strong in the second round with a pair of his signature left hooks. Adesanya was able to keep Pereira at bay in the third and fourth and even did some wrestling and grappling to win the third.

In the fifth, Adesanya oddly stumbled and rolled backward after a leg kick exchange. He said in the postfight news conference that Pereira landed a kick to the peroneal nerve of his right leg, which can numb the leg.

“That’s why my footwork was compromised,” Adesanya said. “It was just my leg. My leg gave away. Kudos to him. He invested in those [calf kicks] well.”

Pereira (7-1) knocked out Sean Strickland in the first round at UFC 276 in July to earn the title shot. The Brazilian slugger has six KO/TKOs in seven career MMA victories and is 4-0 in the UFC. Pereira, is a former Glory Kickboxing middleweight and light heavyweight champion.

“So many years of hard work and dedication, and here I am, champion of the world,” Pereira said.

Adesanya (23-2) had won three straight fights and was undefeated at middleweight coming into this bout. His only career loss before this was in a light heavyweight title fight last year against Jan Blachowicz. The Nigerian-born New Zealand resident had five successful middleweight title defenses following a win over Robert Whittaker to earn the belt in October 2019. Adesanya, 33, was coming off a unanimous decision win over Jared Cannonier at UFC 276 in July.

UFC president Dana White said he wouldn’t rule out an immediate rematch between Pereira and Adesanya, which Adesanya said he is expecting.

“He’s been a great champion for us,” White said of Adesanya. “He likes to fight all the time. He doesn’t say no. He’ll fight anybody. Those are fun guys to have. And he’s a good person.”

Aline Pereira Signs MMA Deal with Legacy Fighting Alliance

It’s a family affair for Aline Pereira

The 32-year-old Brazilian kickboxer, the younger sister of Alex Pereira, will be making a transition to MMA.

Aline Pereira

Pereira, a former Glory kickboxer, has signed a mixed martial arts deal with Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA).

Pereira will make her MMA debut on November 18 against Ultimate Fighter veteran Helen Peralta in a women’s flyweight bout.

Pereira brother, the former two-division Glory Kickboxing champion who is now the top contender in the UFC‘s middleweight division. Alex, 35, will challenge old kickboxing rival Israel Adesanya for Adesanya’s middleweight title in the main event of UFC 281 on Nov. 12 in New York.

Aline, like her brother, trains out of former UFC light heavyweight champion Glover Teixeira‘s gym in Connecticut. She is 6-2 in kickboxing, most recently falling to Glory super bantamweight champion Tiffany Van Soest via unanimous decision in January 2021.

Alex Pereira to Fight UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 281

Alex Pereira is taking on a champion…

Israel Adesanya will defend his UFC middleweight title against the 35-year-old Brazilian professional mixed martial artist and former kickboxer, his old rival, in the headliner of UFC 281 on November 12 in New York’s Madison Square Garden.

Alex Pereira

Pereira owns two wins over Adesanya in kickboxing, including one via knockout. ESPN has Adesanya ranked tied for third on its pound-for-pound MMA list. At middleweight, Adesanya is No. 1 and Pereira is No. 7.

Pereira, a former two-division Glory Kickboxing champion, beat Adesanya in kickboxing once by decision in 2016 and then again a year later via knockout.

Adesanya (23-1) is undefeated in his career at middleweight. The Nigerian-born New Zealand resident has won three straight since falling in a light heavyweight title bout to Jan Blachowicz in March 2021. Adesanya, 33, owns five successful title defenses at middleweight, holding the undisputed title since October 2019.

Pereira (6-1) is coming off a first-round knockout of Sean Strickland at UFC 276 last month, the same card in which Adesanya defended his title successfully against Jared Cannonier. The Brazilian slugger has five finishes in six career pro MMA victories since coming over from kickboxing.

Pereira, 35, is 3-0 in the UFC with a pair of $50,000 Performance of the Night bonuses to his name.