Morning Report: Israel Adesanya says Alex Pereira hits harder than Jan Blachowicz, expects finish at UFC 291

Morning Report: Israel Adesanya says Alex Pereira hits harder than Jan Blachowicz, expects finish at UFC 291

Israel Adesanya is quite familiar with the men featured in the UFC 291 co-main event this Saturday night.

UFC 287 this past April saw “The Last Stylebender” regain his middleweight title with a devastating first-career win over Alex Pereira. Adesanya’s second-round knockout has led to Brazil’s “Poatan” making a change as he debuts at light heavyweight in the UFC against former divisional champion Jan Blachowicz.

Before Pereira arrived in the UFC Adesanya’s lone MMA loss came against Blachowicz in his attempt to become a dual-division titlist. Blachowicz earned the unanimous decision in what was his first and only title defense as champion. Adesanya expects his one-time Polish adversary to be patient with his approach against a likely quicker-starting Pereira. Ultimately, the two-time middleweight king feels the battle of knockout artists could come down to whoever lands first.

“If Jan does what I think he’s gonna do, he’s gonna get caught with a left hook,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “I don’t think this goes the distance. If it does, Jan wins. I felt [Blachowicz’s power]. I think Alex hits harder. It’s just the way he throws, the technique he throws with, the technique he grounds himself. He’s not running, he’s not moving and throwing. He sits when he gets you where he wants you. Especially against the fence. He’ll sit there and throw, so that’s how he’s able to hit harder.

“Jan could definitely learn how to hit harder but if Jan gets him down, I think he’s just going to control him there for three rounds. I’m going Alex by knockout.

Blachowicz, 40, has notoriously been one of the harder hitters with a rather durable chin at 205 pounds, especially later on in his somewhat resurgent career. However, one of the more slept-on aspects of his game has been his grappling and wrestling abilities, which essentially earned him the win against Adesanya.

In his 39-fight career, Blachowicz (29-9-1) has only been stopped by strikes on two occasions and the first was from a leg injury. If the 36-year-old Pereira (7-2) can crack the chin of Poland’s finest, he’ll join his fellow Brazilian Thiago Santos, adding that feather to his cap.

“These are two guys that I’ve fought, two guys that have both beat me,” Adesanya said. “So, it’s interesting to see how does that matchup play into each other? Also, there’s different elements as well. The grappling element. Jan might just try and do that early on and take away his power, his chances of striking and wear him down.

“I think it will be on the feet. Jan’s definitely going to try and take it down. He’s not stupid. Alex, just f—king use that knee. He knows how to time it well but that’s when he’s offensive. Defensively, if someone’s shooting on him or someone’s coming in, you have to drill that and have that in your arsenal sometimes if they do a sloppy takedown, you’re able to defy that.”

Boogeyman. Tony Ferguson pulls knife talking about bear tracking, reveals Bobby Green run-in before UFC 291

Hype. Paulo Costa responds to Khamzat Chimaev, predicts first-round knockout at UFC 294

Ruthless. Robbie Lawler won’t entirely rule out MMA comeback: ‘I definitely have more left in me’

Prediction. Justin Gaethje: Jorge Masvidal will ‘hate’ to wrap BMF title around my waist

Rematch. Dustin Poirier on ‘collision course’ with Justin Gaethje at UFC 291, still down to fight Nate Diaz

Heavyweight. Tom Aspinall chuckles at Jon Jones’ UFC London tweet: ‘I think he kind of patronized me’

Rivals. Lerone Murphy explains beef with ‘deluded’ Nathaniel Wood

The MMA Hour.

291 Media Day.

Embedded 3.

Chiesa vs. Holland preview.

Quite the flying knee.

Super RIZIN 2 Special Announcement Pre-Fight Presser Highlights.

Gaethje – Behind the Curtain.

Poatan’s fight week.

Champ camp.

The body shot challenge.

No Bets Barred. MMA Fighting’s Jed Meshew and Conner Burks discuss who will claim the vacant BMF Title at UFC 291.

Whiskey legends.


It’s the new normal. I ve seen former champ, former broken, former man , now I’m former Mexican as well

— Paulo Costa ( Borrachinha ) (@BorrachinhaMMA) July 26, 2023


He’s beautiful.

Finish him.

Good old Wonderboy.

Shark attack.


The world has lost an artist with the voice of an Angel. Ireland has lost an iconic voice and one of our absolute finest, by a long shot. And I have lost a friend. Sinead’s music will live on and continue to inspire! Rest In Peace, Sinead you are home with your son I am sure ❤️

— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) July 26, 2023

Middleweight drama.

I will say it is wild they are having a card like that and don’t have a headline 6 weeks out. Someone at the ufc really dropped the ball on this…

I offered. Best I could do. Maybe we can just have a parking lot event after for the aussies.

— Sean Strickland (@SStricklandMMA) July 26, 2023

If I were dricus and even if the money was right I’d say no… Hes technically next in line and if he wins the money will be 10 times better than what they will offer him. If he loses hes years from a rematch

Hes making the right call.

— Sean Strickland (@SStricklandMMA) July 26, 2023

Smesh brothers.

Then Khamzat on a horse. Look out, Latifi.


Good company.


Just to clear the air The progression of this infection in 1 week smh.. A few more weeks of rest/healing and it’s back to the grind.

— AJ “The Mercenary” McKee (@ajmckee101) July 27, 2023

Toshiomi Kazama (10-3) vs. Garrett Armfield (8-3); UFC Singapore, Aug. 26

Daniel Zellhuber (13-1) vs. Christos Giagos (20-10); UFC Las Vegas, Sept. 16

If one fight at UFC 291 is most affected by the altitude, I could, unfortunately, see it being the co-main event.

Thanks for reading!

Who wins this weekend?

  • 47%

    Jan Blachowicz

    (33 votes)

69 votes total

Vote Now

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