Tiger Muay Thai head coach Joseph Henle believes that Israel Adesanya will be able to keep his composure in his upcoming UFC Middleweight Championship fight against Alex Pereira at UFC 281 on November 12th in New York.
Adesanya suffered two losses to Pereira in kickboxing, with the second bout being a knockout defeat for the 33-year-old. This is Adesanya’s sole knockout loss in his professional combat sports career.
Adesanya has defended his UFC title on five occasions, utilizing a patient, calculated, counter-striking approach. His last three victories have all come by decision.
There have been theories amongst fans and analysts that Adesanya will want to exact revenge on Pereira for the knockout loss and that he could look to implement an aggressive game plan in order to knock the Brazilian out.
However, Henle does not expect the champion to deviate from his regular strategy and thinks that he will use his experience of going the 25-minute distance to keep a steady pace. Adesanya has won six of his seven UFC fights that have gone the full five rounds.
“I feel like Adesanya will keep a cool head about it. He understands what a five-round fight really has to offer and where you can pick and choose your moments,” Henle told The AllStar.
“I don’t think he’s somebody that’s going to lose his cool. I think he maintains his composure through the fight, I think he stays right where he needs to be.”
Henle thinks Pereira’s lack of five-round experience in MMA could hinder him in this fight. The 35-year-old has had seven professional MMA bouts and has never fought for more than three rounds.
Pereira has fought in five-round contests in kickboxing but these were in three-minute rounds, as opposed to the five-minute rounds that are in MMA.
Henle questioned Pereira’s ability to last in a 25-minute fight due to the fact that he is unaccustomed to having long fights in the Octagon.
“My big question is, can he go five rounds? He’s had three-round fights but if he doesn’t get the knockout with somebody that pushes the pace in a little bit of a different manner, can he actually go five rounds?”
Henle added that it could be an intelligent approach for Adesanya to take Pereira down, in order to accelerate the process of fatigue.
Pereira has been taken down by two of his three UFC opponents and his only loss in MMA was by submission.
“I would want to put him [Pereira] on his back. Put him there, make him a little tired. Everybody knows wrestling is the most exhausting thing you could possibly do. Maybe he tries to wrestle him early just to see if he can make some dents in that tank.”
Israel “The Last Stylebender” Adesanya is a 33-year-old male fighter from Nigeria with 23 pro wins and 1 loss. Adesanya is scheduled to fight Alex Pereira at UFC 281: Adesanya vs. Pereira on Saturday, November 12, 2022.
Israel Adesanya’s recent form coming into this matchup
Israel Adesanya has gone 4-1 in the last 5 professional MMA fights.
- Win vs Jared Cannonier • Decision R5 5:00 • 2022-07-02
- Win vs Robert Whittaker • Decision R5 5:00 • 2022-02-12
- Win vs Marvin Vettori • Decision R5 5:00 • 2021-06-12
- Loss vs Jan Błachowicz • Decision R5 5:00 • 2021-03-06
- Win vs Paulo Costa • KO/TKO R2 3:59 • 2020-09-26
Israel Adesanya’s next opponent: Alex “Poatan” Pereira
Alex “Poatan” Pereira’s recent form coming into this matchup
Alex “Poatan” Pereira is a 35-year-old male fighter from Brazil with 6 pro wins and 1 loss. Pereira is scheduled to fight Israel Adesanya at UFC 281: Adesanya vs. Pereira on Saturday, November 12, 2022.
Alex Pereira has gone 5-0 in the last 5 professional MMA fights.
- Win vs Sean Strickland • KO/TKO R1 2:36 • 2022-07-02
- Win vs Bruno Silva • Decision R3 5:00 • 2022-03-12
- Win vs Andreas Michailidis • KO/TKO R2 0:18 • 2021-11-06
- Win vs Thomas Powell • KO/TKO R1 4:04 • 2020-11-20
- Win vs Marcus Vinicius • KO/TKO R2 4:28 • 2016-05-21
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