Daniel Cormier thinks Alex Pereira should avoid fighting Magomed Ankalaev.
After losing the 185-pound title against Israel Adesanya, Pereira decided to decrease his weight cut and move up to the UFC light heavyweight division. Dana White announced that ‘Poatan’ would need a win before fighting for the title, creating the discussion about who he should fight.
During a YouTube video with Ben Askren, Cormier had this to say about who Pereira should avoid:
“That’s the matchup that Alex Pereira would want to avoid. I think that’s the only one at 205 that you would want to avoid right now because [Magomed] Ankalaev can wrestle, and we saw that in the fight against Jan Blachowicz, where he took him down in the last three rounds.”
Cormier went on to explain how to light heavyweight division doesn’t have many wrestlers. He had this to say about Pereira picking the right time to move up to 205 pounds:
“Now there’s very few wrestlers [at the top of the light heavyweight division], so if you are Alex Pereira, you really aren’t as concerned about going up to 205 then you might have been in the past because there just doesn’t seem to be as many guys for you to worry about just taking you down and laying on you.”
After winning his first three UFC fights, Pereira shocked the MMA community by taking out Adesanya with a fifth-round standing TKO. Five months later, ‘The Last Stylebender’ claimed his revenge, which could be the last the rivals meet in the Octagon.
Daniel Cormier reveals his matchmaking for the UFC light heavyweight top five
In January, Jamahal Hill defeated Glover Teixeira for the 205-pound throne that was vacated by Jiri Prochazka. Once Prochaza returns from his shoulder injury, he’s expected to get a title shot, but nothing has been confirmed. Meanwhile, Magomed Ankalaev and Jan Blachowicz need a win after a disappointing draw at UFC 282.
Now that Alex Pereira has been added to the equation, there will be some intriguing matchmaking for the light heavyweight division. During the same YouTube video, Daniel Cormier had this to say about what fights he wants to see:
“I wanna see Jamahal Hill [vs.] Jiri Prochazka, I wanna see Alex Pereira vs. Jan Blachowicz, I think [Aleksandr] Rakic is fighting Anthony Smith next I think, I’m not exactly sure, maybe.”
Aleksandr Rakic is coming off a severe leg injury against Blachowicz in May 2022. He fought Anthony Smith in August 2020, winning by a unanimous decision. Therefore, ‘Rocket’ will likely fight a different opponent in his Octagon return, which could be Pereira or another top contender.