UFC Champ Alex Pereira has revealed why he decided to join the UFC.
After his second kickboxing loss to Pereira, Adesanya signed with the UFC and went on to become one of the greatest middleweights in UFC history.
During the UFC 287 countdown video, Pereira says he watched an Adesanya interview that eventually led him to decide to leave kickboxing for the UFC.
“When Israel Adesanya joined the UFC, I started taking a close look because I had interest in fighting in MMA,” “There is a video of an interview with Israel Adesanya that motivated me so much.”
The interview Pereira is talking about is an old Sporting News interview in which Adesanya trashed Pereira.
“He watches all my fights, and every time I fight, like clockwork, he’d try to put something out like, ‘I beat this guy,’” Adesanya said. “At the end of the day, no one knows who the f— he is, and he’s going to be that guy when I’m world champion, when I’m a legend, he’s going to be at some pub talking sh*t about, ‘I beat that guy one time.’”
Pereira says he felt challenged by Adesanya’s comments.
“I felt challenged,” Pereira said. “And whenever there’s a challenge, no one can hold me back. I wanted new challenges, and the UFC was it.”
Pereira eventually went to defeat Adesanya at UFC 281 in New York and the two are set to rematch on Saturday April 8th in Miami.