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Israel Adesanya to Defend Middleweight Title Against Alex Pereira at UFC 281



The Ultimate Fighting Championship on Friday announced that middleweight kingpin Israel Adesanya will seek to defend his crown against a familiar foe in kickboxer Alex Pereira on Nov. 12 at the world-famous Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Set to headline UFC 281, the pair has already met twice under kickboxing rules, with the Brazilian taking both contests. “Poatan” won via decision in 2016 and left the Nigerian-born New Zealander unconscious in 2017.

Adesanya is an impressive 12-1 in the UFC and 23-1 overall. He is undefeated at middleweight, with his lone blemish coming against former light heavyweight ace Jan Blachowicz in a 205-title match in March of last year. The 33 year-old last saw action in a unanimous decision victory over Jared Cannonier on July 2.

Pereira, 35, owns a relatively light resume for a title contender at 6-1 (3-0 UFC), but the match has intriguing potential due to the fighters’ previous meetings under different combat sports rules. The former Glory champion has a kickboxing record of 33-7.
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