Last night Israel Adesanya exacted vengeance on Alex Pereira to win back the UFC middleweight title. In the second round, Adesanya backed up to the cage and covered up before delivering two right hooks to the temple and a hammer fist to put the Brazilian out cold.
Afterwards Adesanya made it clear how important this moment was for him.
Table of Contents
Transcript: Israel Adesanya’s post-fight interview with Joe Rogan
Israel Adesanya: Hey shush, listen up, I want to say something. People, Earth, I need to say something. I hope everyone of you behind the screens or around this arena can feel this level of happiness just one time in your life. I hope all of you can feel how f**king happy I am just one time in your life.
But guess what? You will never feel this level of happiness if you don’t go for something in your own life when they knock you down, when they s**t on you, when they talk s**t about you and they try to put their foot on their neck. If you stay down you will never ever get that resolve. Fortify your mind and feel this level of happiness as you rise, one time in your life. But I’m blessed to be able to feel this s**t again and again and again and again and again and again.
Joe Rogan: Israel, out of all the victories that you have ever had, this one has got to be the sweetest.
IA: Bra, they say revenge is sweet. And if you know me, I’ve got a sweet tooth. You already know, this is f**king sweet.
JR: This man and you have been engaged in four wars now and for you to close the show the way you did tonight was so spectacular and so cements your legacy as one of the greatest of all time.
IA: Bra, I’m telling you, no matter what Alex is a great champion, no matter what. He lost the belt tonight, but he will always be a champion. In his story, I’m the antagonist. In his story I’m the bad guy. But tonight it’s my story. History!
JR: You said, coming into this fight, that you were going to close the show early. Why did you think that?
IA: I told you, the hunter is now the hunted. I told him this before. Thank you for all that you have done. Thank you for beating me because, beating me, he made me a better fighter, a better person. In this camp, I didn’t f**k around. If you know me, you know I like to vacation, but I didn’t f**k around. I stayed on the grind and I put myself through it. You’ve been seeing me on the FreeStyleBender on YouTube. I don’t put my highlights on the ‘gram, I put the work. I get tired, so that way when I’m in here I don’t get tired.
JR: You showed in those videos, the FreeStyleBender videos, you left no stone unturned.
IA: I don’t even know what I hit him with, but I played possum a bit. That last one had everything. That was since 2017. That last hammer fist was from the gods!
JR: One of the greatest victories of all time. It was an honour to call your fight sir. Thank you very much.
IA: M.I.A, I’m about to walk out to one of your tracks. And when I’m heading out let’s turn up and f**king party because I’m in Miami. And when you Miami baby, dale.
Israel Adesanya now 1-3 vs. Alex Pereira
Israel Adesanya’s win over Alex Pereira is direct payback for his TKO loss to Poatan in November. In that fight, their first in the UFC Octagon, Pereira took Adesanya into the fifth round before finishing him with his patented left hook.
When the pair were in Glory kickboxing together. Pereira first defeated Adesanya by decision. In a rematch, Pereira scored a vicious KO over Adesanya. Pereira remains the only man to ever stop Adesanya with strikes, in any sport.
Who else were the big winners at UFC 287?
Gilbert Burns won his co-main event fight with Jorge Masvidal, earning a lopsided unanimous decision. After the bout, Masvidal announced his likely retirement from the sport.
Other main card winners were Rob Font and Kevin Holland who scored stoppage wins over Adrian Yanez and Santiago Ponzinibbio respectively. Christian Rodriguez also scored a win, taking a decision over the highly touted teenage prospect Raul Rosas Jr.
About the author