‘One of the greatest KOs I’ve seen’: The moment Israel Adesanya shocked Alex Pereira at UFC 287

Israel Adesanya regained the UFC middleweight title from long-time rival Alex Pereira

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Israel Adesanya’s vicious knockout of Alex Pereira was described as a “masterpiece” and a “statement made” by fellow UFC stars, while commentator Joe Rogan called it “one of the greatest KOs I’ve seen in my life”.

Adesanya finally beat long-time rival Pereira with a stunning win at UFC 287 to regain his middleweight title at the the Kaseya Center in Miami.

Pereira had his opponent up against the cage and seemingly in trouble late in the second round after a series of kicks to Adesanya’s vulnerable lead leg, and began to unload with body punches and a knee to the head. But Adesanya absorbed the blows before countering with a right hook from nowhere which shook Pereira, and then delivered a right-left combination to send the Brazilian crashing to the canvas, and he followed up with hammer fists to end the fight.

  • Re-live the fight as it happened blow-by-blow

Adesanya suffered a controversial points loss to Pereira in their first fight, a kickboxing match, and in the rematch the New Zealander was leading but was knocked out. In November, in their first MMA clash, again Adesanya was ahead but he was beaten in the final round. But here, on his fourth attempt, he finally got his win over Pereira, and in stunning fashion.


UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou tweeted: “The best middleweight of all time and I’m not arguing with anyone.”

“That’s how you do it baby…LFG!!” said Alex Volkanovski.

And there were plenty of challengers ready to line up to take on Adesanya.

“Amazing fight and great story finisher,” tweeted British middleweight Robert Whittaker. “Rest up, see you soon.”

The Polish former light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz tweeted: “Congratulations on a successful rematch, @stylebender. If you want to try another one, you know where to find me. This time at middleweight for your belt.”


Speaking in the octagon after his victory, Adesanya said he “played possum” to draw Pereira in before unleashing that devastating right hook. “They say revenge is sweet and, if you know me, I’ve got a sweet tooth. This is f***ing sweet. I’m telling you, no matter what, Alex is a great champion. He lost the belt tonight, but he will always be a champion.

He added: “I told you, the hunter is now the hunted. Beating me, he made me a better fighter, a better person. In this camp, I didn’t f*** around. That last hammer fist was from the gods.”

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