Michel Pereira sold himself as a human highlight reel in order to earn a coveted Ultimate Fighting Championship contract. He more than lived up to the hype in his debut with the Las Vegas-based promotion.
The Brazilian needed less than two minutes to dispatch British veteran Danny Roberts in their preliminary welterweight matchup at UFC Rochester on Saturday night. From the beginning, the Scorpion Fighting Systems product threatened his opponent with a plethora of flashy, high risk maneuvers that have become his calling card. Pereira put a final stamp on the fight by dazing Roberts with a knee before knocking him out with a follow-up right hand at the 1:47 mark of the opening frame.
“I’ve always dreamed about this moment. I’ve fought a lot for this moment,” Pereira said. “Today, it became reality. My biggest dream has always been to fight in the UFC. I was very emotional and happy to be in there. I’ve dreamed about this every day.”
The 25-year-old known as “Demolidor” fought seven times in 2018 alone, posting a 4-1 record with two no contests. All of his triumphs ended inside the distance – as have 15 of his 22 career victories. Pereira’s resume isn’t filled with recognizable names, but it’s hard to argue with the results of his first UFC foray.
The man himself claims that Saturday night was just the tip of the iceberg.
“I’ve had better fights than this. I fought very little in there. I couldn’t even show half of my skills. I still have a lot of fantastic moves to show the UFC fans,” he said.
“I’d like to fight with the best. I don’t choose opponents. I want to be the new showman in the UFC. This is who I am.”