UFC 287 With Alex Pereira Defending Title Vs. Israel Adesanya

The third meeting between Alex Pereira and Israel Adesanya is now official for UFC 287.

Pereira will defend his middleweight title against the former champion on April 8 from Miami. It will be the first time in two decades that the Octagon has visited the Florida city.

Along with Pereira vs. Adesanya, Jorge Masvidal returns, taking on fellow welterweight contender Gilbert Burns.

Newly crowned champion Pereira (7-1, fighting out of Danbury, Conn. by way of Sao Paulo, Brazil) stunned the world by dethroning Adesanya via dramatic comeback KO in November. A former kickboxing titleholder, he also holds memorable KO wins over Sean Strickland and Andreas Michailidis. Pereira now intends to secure his first successful title defense by once again stopping Adesanya in emphatic fashion.

Former champion Adesanya (23-2, fighting out of Auckland, New Zealand) plans to earn a measure of revenge against Pereira. Among the greatest middleweights in UFC history, he holds spectacular victories against Robert Whittaker (twice), Paulo Costa and Anderson Silva. Adesanya now has his sights set on reclaiming the belt with another highlight-reel finish.

Burns (21-5, fighting out of Boca Raton, Fla. by way of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) wastes no time getting back in the Octagon following his January win over Neil Magny. A submission ace with heavy hands, Burns also holds impressive victories against Tyron Woodley, Stephen Thompson and Demian Maia. Miami’s Masvidal (35-16, fighting out of Miami, Fla.) attempts to steal the show in front of his hometown fans and start his 2023 campaign off with a vintage performance. A perennial fan favorite, he has secured thrilling victories over Nate Diaz, Ben Askren and Darren Till. Masvidal now looks to deliver another incredible KO to re-enter the welterweight Top 10.

Additional bouts on the card include

* No. 6 ranked Rob Font (19-6, fighting out of Woburn, Mass.) meets No. 13 Adrian Yanez (16-3, fighting out of Houston, Texas) in an intriguing clash of bantamweight contenders

* Kevin Holland (23-9 1NC, fighting out of Fort Worth, Texas) squares off with Santiago Ponzinibbio (30-6, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla.) in a welterweight bout guaranteed to deliver fireworks

* Raul Rosas Jr. (7-0, fighting out Las Vegas, Nev.) aims to remain undefeated when he faces Christian Rodriguez (8-1, fighting out of Phoenix, Ariz.) in an exciting bantamweight tilt

* No. 13 ranked middleweight contender Kelvin Gastelum (17-8 1NC, fighting out of Yuma, Ariz.) battles No. 14 Chris Curtis (30-9, fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev. by way of Cincinnati, Ohio)

* No. 13 ranked welterweight contender Michael Chiesa (18-6, fighting out of Spokane Valley, Wash.) faces Li Jingliang (19-8, fighting out of Beijing, China)

* No. 11 strawweight contender Michelle Waterson (18-10, fighting out of Albuquerque, N.M.) takes on No. 13 Luana Pinheiro (10-1, fighting out of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

* Chris Barnett (23-8, fighting out of Athens, Ga.) locks horns with Chase Sherman (16-11, fighting out of D’Iberville, Miss.) in an exciting heavyweight tilt

* Gerald Meerschaert (35-15, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisc.) squares off with streaking Joe Pyfer (9-2, fighting out of Philadelphia, Penn.) at middleweight

* No. 14 ranked flyweight contender Cynthia Calvillo (9-5-1, fighting out of San Jose, Calif.) returns to strawweight when she meets Loopy Godinez (8-3, fighting out of Vancouver, B.C., Canada by way of Aguascalientes, Mexico)

* Dana White’s Contender Series signees face off when Ignacio Bahamondes (13-4, fighting out of Chicago, Ill. by way of Santiago, Chile) takes on Nikolas Motta (13-4, fighting out of Governador Valadares, Minas Gerais, Brazil) at lightweight

* Shayilan Nuerdanbieke (39-10, fighting out of Beijing, China) goes for his fourth consecutive win when he takes on Steve Garcia (13-5, fighting out of Albuquerque, N.M.) at featherweight

* Undefeated prospect Jaqueline Amorim (6-0, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Fla. by way of Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil) makes her UFC debut against Sam Hughes (7-5, fighting out of Dallas, Texas)

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