Early Preview for UFC 287: Pereira vs Adesanya 2

With no UFC event scheduled for this upcoming weekend, the next card will occur the following Saturday when UFC 287 takes place in Miami. The promotion’s return to South Florida will feature Israel Adesanya attempting to regain the UFC Middleweight championship from Alex Pereira as the headliner. The co-main event will be Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal facing off in a matchup that has potential future UFC Welterweight title implications involved for the winner.

There are currently twelve fights booked for the event, with two other fighters (Ignacio Bahamondes and Michael Chiesa) hoping the company can potentially find short-notice replacements to get back on the card after their original opponents were forced to withdraw. While I haven’t seen much about a potential new opponent for Bahamondes, Kevin Lee and Niko Price are apparently both interested in filling in as short-notice opponents against Chiesa, so hopefully the promotion can get something done with that situation.

While there are plenty of great fights on this card, obviously none will be bigger than the rematch between Adesanya and Pereira. Between kickboxing and MMA, Pereira now holds a 3-0 lead in the long-lasting rivalry between these two amazing fighters. Adesanya had been undefeated at middleweight in MMA prior to Pereira putting him away via standing TKO in the fifth round of their title fight at UFC 281. Adesanya had a 3-1 unanimous lead on the scorecards prior to the stoppage in the last fight, so it will be very interesting to see what adjustments Adesanya makes for this one.

The co-main event will feature Burns and Masvidal in matchup that surprisingly could have some implications for current UFC Welterweight champion Leon Edwards. Despite losing three straight fights entering this matchup with Burns, we could very realistically witness Masvidal leapfrog the line for a title shot if he pulls off the upset in Miami. Dana White has gone on record saying that Colby Covington will be the next to challenge Edwards for the title, however, there is history with both of those fighters for Masvidal, so a matchup against either would make financial sense for the UFC.

Beyond those two fights, there are several other ones on the card that should be highly entertaining. Rob Font and Adrian Yanez will be fighting in a matchup of ranked opponents in the bantamweight division and Kevin Holland will be looking to bounce back in the welterweight division against Santiago Ponzinibbio. The card will also feature two of the biggest names from the most recent season of DWCS, with both Raul Rosas Jr and Joe Pyfer scheduled for their second UFC fights. Rosas Jr will be facing fellow highly touted prospect Christian Rodriguez to open the main card, while Pyfer will be facing long-time UFC veteran Gerald Meerschaert as the featured early prelim (currently anyway, depending on lineup changes).

Check back here during the next week and a half for full my picks, predictions, betting, and more for UFC 287. Thankfully, I’ll actually be attending this one in person, so I’m planning to have more content than usual for this event, including some graphics that I put together and hopefully some good videos and pictures from the press conferences, ceremonial weigh-in, and the event itself as well.

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