In the co-main event of UFC 291 we saw a title eliminator at light heavyweight between two former champions. Former middleweight champion Alex Pereira (7-2) made his light heavyweight debut as he took on former light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz (29-9-1).
With Jamahal Hill getting injured and vacating the light heavyweight title, it’s expected that the winner of this fight will take on Jiri Prochazka later this year for the vacant title. Of course, Prochazka was the undisputed champion before having to vacate the title himself due to an injury.
Both Pereira and Blachowicz were looking to make a massive statement and earn there shot at UFC light heavyweight gold.
UFC 291 Recap
The UFC 291 co-main event kicks off with a touch of the gloves. Both men holding their spot in the center and Blachowicz shoots for a takedown within the first 15 seconds. Pereira defending well and gets a standing guillotine. It looks well but Blachowicz gives the thumbs up.
Blachowicz keeps trying for takedowns, but Pereira is staying upright for now. 90 seconds in and Pereira is still defending the takedown well. Blachowicz finally gets the takedown and Pereira is trying to get back to his feet. Blachowicz gets his back and tries to lock in a rear naked choke. It looks close but Pereira defends well.
Two minutes left and Blachowicz is just controlling things here. 90 seconds left in the round and Blachowicz is just holding the back mount. Blachowicz keeps trying to re-work the choke but Pereira is still surviving. Another choke attempt here from Blachowicz. The round comes to a close and it’s all Blachowicz in the first at UFC 291.
Entering the second at UFC 291 and Pereira’s only hope is to keep this standing. Low kick from Pereira starts the striking in the second. Another low kick and one now from Blachowicz. Check left hook from Pereira. Low kick from Pereira lands again. Blachowicz letting this stay on the feet in the opening minute.
Jab from Blachowicz lands and then both men trade low kicks. Jab to the body from Blachowicz and a low kick from Pereira. Blachowicz’s calf is starting to get beat up here. Both men trade big shots and then Blachowicz gets a takedown. Pereira trying to work his way to the fence to get back up.
Blachowicz is just trying to hold him down not doing much. Two minutes left in the round and Pereira gets back to his feet. The crowd roars but Pereira needs separation. Knee from Blachowicz in the clinch. 90 seconds left in the round and and Pereira explodes away. Head kick attempt from Pereira.
Blachowicz looks very tired and Pereira is heavy on the pressure now. Horrible takedown attempt from Blachowicz and Pereira is trying to take control here. Huge combination from Pereira. Blachowicz is in trouble here. Huge end to the round from Pereira and that should be his round at UFC 291.
Entering the final round at UFC 291 and all the momentum is with Alex Pereira right now. They touch gloves and here we go. Low kicks form both men start things out. Blachowicz’s leg looks battered. Another nasty leg kick from Pereira. Blachowicz moves forward and lands a big combination. Another nasty kick from Pereira. Jab from Pereira lands.
Heavy pressure now from Pereira but Blachowicz counters with a big combination. Pereira stalking Blachowicz here in the final round. Jab from Pereira snaps the head back of Blachowicz. Sloppy left attempt from Blachowicz and Pereira lands a nice right hand. Takedown attempt from Blachowicz and the crowd boos.
Pereira breaks away and lands a leg kick. Another leg kick from Pereira. Nice left hand from Blachowicz. Check left hook lands for Pereira. Jab from Pereira and then he hurts him with a left hand. Left now from Blachowicz. Huge left hook from Pereira lands. Jab to the body from Pereira.
Blachowicz goes for another takedown but can’t get it. Takedown from Blachowicz and that’s where the round will end. These scores should be interesting at UFC 291.
Alex Pereira def. Jan Blachowicz by Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)