Alex Pereira Admits Israel Adesanya Questioning His “Self-Esteem” Gave ‘Extra Motivation to Shut Him Off’

Published 02/06/2023, 7:31 AM EST

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Israel Adesanya‘s rivalry with Alex Pereira has left MMA fans on the edge of their seats. The duo is a part of the most popular middleweight rivalries in recent history. Moreover, all the aspects of the fight were enjoyable for the fans. The fans indulged in the fight right from the trash-talking till the very end of the fight.

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Furthermore, the fans get to experience it once again, as this time Adesanya and Pereira look set for a re-run at UFC 287. However, the mood will be different this time, as Adesanya is challenging for the title as Pereira is wary of his opponent. Recently, Pereira has spoken about one issue that motivated him to defeat ‘Stylebender’ in their previous bout. Moreover, it’s interesting to know what ‘Poatan’ felt before the bout and how ‘Stylebender’ got under his skin.

Alex Pereira revealed what motivated him to knock out Israel Adesanya

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In a conversation with ESPN MMA’s Brett Okamoto, the UFC middleweight champion disclosed his mindset in the fight with Adesanya. He said via his translator Plinio Cruz, “Well on fight day he [Alex Pereira] completely went blank and forgot everything because he was focused on a mission”.

However, he also disclosed that Adesanya got under his skin, which gave him some extra motivation for the fight. ‘Poatan’ revealed, “But leading up to the fight every day definitely motivates him in a way that what he said about him but in a way too he said that there’s people in the world like this that will say things like that and put someone’s self-esteem down.

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“Alex is a very mentally strong guy but there’s people that sometimes got shocking by comments like that with that. So that kind of got in my extra motivation to shut him off.”

What Adesanya said about Alex Pereira before the fight?

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Israel Adesanya was fired up before facing ‘Poatan’ for the UFC middleweight championship. While speaking in an interview with TMZ, ‘Stylebender’ said, “He doesn’t speak English, so I don’t really have anything to say to him… I’ll speak his language. He’s a violent man, but so am I, we’ll speak violence on November 12th.”

In another interview with Morning Kombat, Adesanya said, “After the Strickland fight, I already knew. I said he was next and I said he still doesn’t deserve [it]. Deserve is a subjective word. People like to say [people] deserve this, deserve that. F*ck deserve. Did you earn [it]? What did you do to earn this spot? I still don’t think he’s earned the spot enough, but I welcome it.”

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What do you think about Alex Pereira’s comment about Israel Adesanya? Do you think Adesanya crossed a line? Who do you think will win the rematch? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Faizan Mirza

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Faizan Mirza is a UFC Writer at Essentially Sports. He has had a keen eye on the UFC since 2015 and is a fan of Conor McGregor because of his attitude and charisma. Faizan had been following McGregor's ascent in the sport.
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Edited by:

Amal Joyce

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