Not many men have Octagon debuts as wild and entertaining as Michel Pereira’s. Back in May, the up-and-coming welterweight made quick work of Danny Roberts, knocking him out with a flying knee in the first round. But, not before showing off all the flashy moves he could fit in the 1:47 of fight time.
Now, paired up to take on short notice replacement Tristan Connelly at UFC Vancouver, in Canada, the 25-year-old Brazilian wants the world to know that they can always count on him to deliver thrilling performances. To drive this point home – in an interview with Combate – Pereira said that when it comes to entertainment, he wants to become MMA’s next Anderson Silva.
“Yes, I do (see myself as Anderson Silva’s successor). I think about that a lot. I see it as a duty. MMA is becoming a little dull, because everyone wants to win. They take you down, submit you and it’s over. I don’t mean to disrespect jiu-jitsu, I’m a BJJ guy, a blackbelt. But they’re too stuck with that mentality of winning and that’s it. Screw those who are watching you. I might lose a fight, but I’ll never let one of my fights be boring.”
“I think about this new generation of fighters that is coming right now.” Pereira continued. “I think about carrying Anderson’s legacy. In fact, I want to train with him in the future so I can really carry his legacy. It’s not easy to build a legacy like he did. In my opinion, he’s one of the greatest of all times, even though he’s not doing so well right now. But I do think about becoming the new Anderson Silva in the UFC.”
The Roberts victory extended Pereira’s current winning streak to three in a row, with knockout wins over Won Jun Choi and Dae Sung Kim in Road FC. His last loss came in December 2018, when he was TKO’d by Dusko Todorovic at SBC 19.
Now, Michel Pereira is expected to take on UFC newcomer Tristan Connelly. Connelly took the fight on short notice after Pereira’s original opponent, Sergey Khadozkho was forced out of the card due to visa issues. The pair is lined up to meet at UFC Fight Night 158, in Vancouver, Canada, on September 14. The card is expected to be headlined by a lightweight bout between Donald Cerrone and Justin Gaethje.