Former UFC middleweight champion is still a betting favourite against Alex Pereira after Pereira returned to the limelight with a sensational knockout victory over Jiri Prochazka at UFC 295, seizing the coveted light heavyweight title.
In the immediate aftermath of the Madison Square Garden showcase, in which Pereira landed his second promotional crown, the Brazilian offered to fight Adesanya at the light heavyweight limit in a mixed martial arts rubber-match decider.
Suggesting a light heavyweight championship fight with arch-rival in a potential mixed martial arts trilogy bout, Pereira has opened and remains a betting underdog to beat the City Kickboxing staple in a third fight, after his UFC 295 win.
Despite holding a a knockout and decision win over Adesanya during their respective kickboxing tenures and a TKO win in UFC, while suffering only one loss to the Nigerian-born fighter, Pereira is still regarded as the underdog.
Opening as a sizeable betting underdog at +155 to successfully defend his light heavyweight crown against Adesanya if they share the Octagon together again, the Brazilian is sitting versus a -185 betting favorite in the form of the Nigerian-Kiwi.
With Adesanya most recently featuring in a title loss to Sean Strickland ‘Down Under’, betting odds on a third fight with Pereira are already available at the top casinos in Australia.
Suggesting a third title fight in the UFC as soon as next year, Pereira’s offer has been knocked back by the City Kickboxing staple immediately, however.
“I’m not the type of guy to call people out but there’s a guy that back in the day did some interviews and I said I was a guy who as just going to stay in the bar,” Alex Pereira told Joe Rogan after UFC 295.
“That motivated me. He rescued me from a bar to be here today. This guy said he just wants to come back and fight in 2027. I think he’s a very talented guy. It’s a waste of talent so I want to rescue him too, to come here and fight. I know that I’m not going to do what he did to me to and make me fight three times to fight at middleweight,” Alex Pereira explained.
“I know it’s a guy we have a lot of history. I want to make this fight happen. (Israel) Adesanya, come to daddy.”
First sharing the Octagon at UFC 281 back in November of last year in ‘The Big Apple’, Pereira rallied to turn in a stunning fifth round win over the then-defending, Adesanya, striking with a spectacular standing TKO victory at Madison Square Garden.
In April of this year, rematching Florida, Adesanya stopped Pereira in the second round with a thunderous counter right hook KO..
Adesanya has teased a potential layoff until 2027 at the very earliest amid his loss to Strickland, however, also flirted with a potential comeback as March of next year at a pegged Saudi Arabia event.