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Alex Pereira Announces Move to Light Heavyweight

Alex Pereira Light Heavyweight
Former UFC middleweight champion Alex Pereira is moving up to light heavyweight. The 205-pound division got a talent new member. (Jessica Alcheh-USA TODAY Sports)

Alex Pereira Announces Move to Light Heavyweight

Former UFC middleweight champion Alex Pereira has announced that he will be moving to light heavyweight. Pereira made the announcement on his social media platforms.

There was a large amount of speculation that Pereira would move to light heavyweight after his rematch against Israel Adesanya at UFC 287. It made sense for a variety of reasons. The most important is that Pereira was cutting a lot of weight to make the middleweight limit.

After UFC 287, Adesanya said he was not interested in a trilogy fight against Pereira. In turn, Pereira did not have much of a reason to stay at middleweight, assuming the Adesanya trilogy was off the table.

The timing of this announcement is important as well. The UFC middleweight and light heavyweight divisions both have champions that are looking for a contender.

As discussed, it is unlikely that Pereira was going to get the trilogy bout against Adesanya — even if he deserved it. Now, the next middleweight title challenger can be determined without Pereira’s name being in the discussion.

What’s more impactful is that Pereira can now be put into light-heavyweight title discussions. The current champion, Jamahal Hill, does not have a fight booked. Jiri Prochazka seems to be the most viable option, which would make sense because Prochazka was the champion before he suffered an injury and vacated the belt.

That said, Hill won the belt over Pereira’s training partner Glover Teixeira. The UFC could easily book Hill against Pereira and promote the fight by saying Pereira is looking to get revenge against Hill. A Pereira light heavyweight title fight would also allow Prochazka to take more time to recover from his injury. At the same time, his next fight would still be for the title as he would fight the winner.

At a minimum, Pereira’s addition to the light heavyweight division greatly strengthens that division. At a maximum, it could provide the division’s next title challenger. The move provides a good amount of clarity to the middleweight division as well.

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