Mixed Martial Arts takes centerstage again today as Israel Adesanya headlines UFC 281 against Alex Pereira at the Madison Square Garden in New York City.
The “Style-bender” is a heavy betting favorite and I would agree but Pereira is no pushover and could very well upset the apple cart.
Here’s how I see it unfolding.
STYLE-BENDER. Pereira’s kickboxing background serves him well in the first round. He fends off Adesanya’s offensive antics by keeping him at bay with well-placed kicks.
The ground battle commences in the second as Pereira scores a single leg midway through the round. They jostle for position and end up with Pereira trying to mount, albeit unsuccessfully.
Adesanya somehow manages to lock on a triangle choke and luckily for Pereira the bell rings.
In the third, both men exchange jabs and right hands. Adesanya’s speed comes to fore as he rattles off a combination before taking down Pereira.
Neither man gets the decisive advantage on the ground for the next few minutes and as both men scramble to their feet, the bell rings to end the round.
The bout ends in a shocking conclusion in the fourth. As Pereira advances and lunges, Adesanya executes a near perfect spinning backfist, hitting the Brazilian on top of his right ear.
Pereira goes down more stunned than hurt, the torque behind the blow causing him to lose equilibrium and balance.
In a flash, Adesanya is on him raining down blows and the ref is forced to step in to call for the denouement of the fight.
AMORES. While we are on the topic of fighting, did you see that clip of JRU player
John Amores running amok all over the court and in the process knocking down two players from the College of St. Benilde?
When the goon hits your eye like a big pizza pie that’s Amores... Sorry about the corny lyrical pun but I just couldn’t resist as the song “That’s Amore” came to mind.
With bans handed down not only by the NCAA but also his team, this 6’2” spitfire forward may just as well kiss his college basketball career goodbye.
What I noticed from the clip is that he initially went after a fan who had heckled him but as he neared, one of the St. Benilde players met him and attempted to throw a punch, leading to one of the wildest melees we have seen take place in a college basketball game.
Not to justify his actions of course, but all erring parties including that St. Benilde player need to be meted appropriate penalties.
LAST ROUND. It’s on my strapping handsome nephew, Karl Antonius de Pio who recently celebrated his birthday. Cheers!