Israel Adesanya is gearing up for a high-stakes rematch against Alex Pereira in UFC 287. Adesanya, who sits at 0-3 against Pereira, knows that this is his one shot to exorcise his demons against the only opponent to ever knock him out in his UFC Middleweight career.
“This is my Eminem moment, my ‘8 Mile’ moment. You get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow, this opportunity comes once in a lifetime, and this is it. This is it for me,” Adesanya said. With the middleweight title on the line, this time in the hands of Pereira, Adesanya is not downplaying the stakes of the fight.
Adesanya has come close to defeating Pereira in each of his previous three fights. In their last UFC fight, Adesanya was ahead on the scorecards until Pereira staged a late comeback and knocked him out in the final round. Strategically, Adesanya knows what works for him, and he is determined to put the finishing touches on his performance and prevent Pereira from pulling off another upset.
“He knows how dangerous I am. He knows I’m not an easy fight. He knows he’s going to have to go through fire, and I’m going to make him fight for his life in this fight,” Adesanya said. “But we’re here, you put a mic in front of me, you expect me to talk — I’m really over all this s***. I really just want to fight. You guys want some words; I’ll give you words. I’m going to make him fight for his life. That’s not no trash talk; that’s no bulls***. I’m here to fight. I’m ready to go.”
Adesanya’s UFC 287 rematch against Pereira will be a do-or-die battle for the middleweight champion. Even though the rivalry has been one-sided in its results, Adesanya is determined to make things right and add another chapter to the rivalry with his performance. “I know what works for me. I know how I can beat this guy. I know every time I fight this guy, I’m beating him, and then he has this special ability to recover and put his foot on the gas. So I have to find a way to take him out of the driver’s seat, which I will,” Adesanya said.
As he faces the only opponent to ever knock him out, Adesanya knows he has to give his all to ensure victory. With everything on the line, Adesanya is determined to give it his best shot and emerge victorious.