Alex Pereira unsure how Israel Adesanya does vs. Dricus Du Plessis: ‘After we fought, he changed a little bit’

Alex Pereira has a hard time predicting the expected title fight between Dricus Du Plessis and Israel Adesanya.

UFC middleweight champion Du Plessis (21-2 MMA, 7-0 UFC) and Adesanya (24-3 MMA, 13-3 UFC) are rumored to potentially fight on the UFC 305 pay-per-view card Aug. 17 in Perth, Australia. Adesanya will look to rebound from his title loss to Sean Strickland at UFC 293.

Prior to the Strickland loss, Adesanya knocked out Pereira at UFC 287 in March 2023. Adesanya avenged his UFC 281 knockout loss to “Poatan,” who thinks he hasn’t looked the same since their fights.

“Being honest with you, like I said before, why the Strickland fight for him would be a hard fight and looking how everything played out, how everything worked, after I fought Adesanya, he changed a little bit,” Pereira told Fox Sports Australia through a Portuguese-language interpreter. “It’s kind of like, I’m not going to say he’s not the same anymore but he’s been performing a little different, so I don’t even know what to expect.”

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With their series tied 1-1 in MMA, Pereira (10-2 MMA, 7-1 UFC) was open to a trilogy bout with Adesanya, but says “The Last Stylebender” did not reciprocate his enthusiasm.

Pereira has since moved up to light heavyweight, captured that division’s belt, and successfully defended it with a knockout of Jamahal Hill at UFC 300 in April. He is currently angling for a rematch with Jiri Prochazka, whom he knocked out to claim the vacant light heavyweight title at UFC 295.

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