MMA coach feels Alex Pereira’s career may never be the same after UFC 287

Tristar Gym head coach Firas Zahabi has raised concerns about the potential long-term effects of the knockout loss that Alex Pereira faced recently.

Pereira had previously been undefeated against Adesanya in both kickboxing and MMA. He had a perfect record against Adesanya  before their recent match.

Zahabi now believes that the damage may have already been done. In his video, Zahabi cited examples of other UFC competitors who experienced career-changing consequences after suffering knockout losses.

He mentions José Aldo, who was infamously knocked out in just 13 seconds by Conor McGregor at UFC 194. Zahabi suggests that Aldo was never able to fully recover from that loss, and it had a lasting impact on his career.

Zahabi also brought up BJ Penn’s retirement loss to Georges St-Pierre at UFC 94. According to Zahabi, BJ Penn’s defeat at the hands of GSP prompted him to end his career. In a video he details:

“…he might never be the same, once you get knocked out really badly like that, like for instance, I’ll tell you, like, when Aldo got knocked out by McGregor, he was never the same again. When Georges TKO’d BJ Penn, when he gave him that beating, that really bad beating, he was never really the same again.”

Additionally, Pereira will probably gain from the less drastic weight reductions needed for him to reach 205 lbs. Extreme weight cutting is known to weaken one’s chin and increase the risk of brain trauma. Moving up to light heavyweight may reduce the strain of weight cutting for Pereira, potentially benefiting his overall health and performance.

It would be interesting to see whether Pereira can recover from his loss once he enters the 205-pound division.