Flashy welterweight Michel Pereira did not get his way in Vancouver, Canada. Paired up against short notice replacement and natural lightweight Tristan Connelly, the Brazilian failed to repeat the same feat he did in his Octagon debut, when he managed to knock Danny Roberts out quickly in the first round.
However, dropping an unanimous decision due to what Pereira claims to be a problematic weight cut, in which he missed the welterweight mark by one pound and had to give 20% of his purse to Connelly, the 25-year-old tells Ag Fight he believes he did enough to win the first two rounds and warrant a win, but feels like his opponent’s was accounted for when the judges scored the fight.
“In my opinion, I won two rounds, the first two. I was doing well and felt good in those rounds. I started to tire in the middle of the second round, but I believe I won the first and the second. In the third, my body was shutting down, I was too tired. It’s like they told me, though. The guy (Connelly) is Canadian, I’m fighting in his turf, so the decision is a little biased towards him.”
During fight week and ever since his UFC debut, Pereira has been telling the media how he intends to be a showman in the Octagon and stated that he wants to be Anderson Silva’s succesor when it comes to being an entertainment in MMA.
Although his wild techniques did not score him a win in Canada, Michel says he does not intend to change. He claims he can’t change his essence and that things could have been different against Connelly if not for a faulty weight cut.
“A lot of things happened this week, it was really tough. I was cutting weight by myself. My body didn’t respond like it usually does. When I’m fighting, my pace usually goes up. In this fight, it started going down in the second round. I was very tired, I couldn’t do anything and was just surviving. But I did what I wanted to, I put on a show and showed my arsenal. Many people think it’s a joke, but it’s my style. It’s how I fight, it’s not a joke. What I think is a joke is when a guy taunts the other by asking them to hit them in the face, showing their tongue to the opponent, that stuff. I don’t do that.”
A big welterweight, Pereira does consider a move to the middleweight division in the future, which could be as near as his next bout. In order not to suffer with two consecutive straining weight cuts, Michel believes he could be back in the Octagon as soon as November, but not as a welterweight.
“I might fight at middleweight for my next fight so I can recover. About my style, if you like it, thank you, all I can do is be thankful. For those who didn’t like it, oh well. Just understand that it isn’t a joke, it’s my style. Like Anderson Silva has his style or Anthony Pettis has his style. I think I’ll be back in November, maybe at a heavier division so my body can recover and I hope to put on a show again.”
Before the loss, Pereira (23-10) scored a knockout win over Danny Roberts back in May. That win was the last one in a win streak which started with two other knockout wins, over Won Jun Choi and Dae Sung Kim, respectively, in Road FC.