Newly-minted UFC Middleweight champion, Alex Pereira, may not be fighting at UFC 283 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this weekend (Sat., Jan. 21, 2023), but his presence is definitely being felt around town.
Especially when it comes to the high scores on local punching machines.
Punching machines are generally considered novelty devices that don’t really reflect reality when it comes to how hard (or soft) someone hits. But, once UFC’s Performance Institute got a fancy scientific version to measure the power of various strikers, all of a sudden there’s an obsession with who has the hardest kick, hardest punch ... and on and on.
While we’ll have to wait until “Poatan” is in Las Vegas to use the real, scientifically accurate punching machine at the Performance Institute. But, for now, he’s the record holder for the UFC-branded punching machine set up near Jeunesse Arena.
He absolutely clobbered that thing, racking up an impressive score of 969.
There’s no doubting Pereira’s punching power in real life. The kickboxer-turned mixed martial arts (MMA) champion has 21 knockouts across his 33 kickboxing wins, and six knockouts in his eight MMA bouts. The latest and greatest was a technical knockout win against Israel Adesanya at UFC 281 to capture the Middleweight strap.
That was a fight “Poatan” was losing on the scorecards, but in the fifth round Pereira still managed to channel his insane power to knock Adesanya senseless (watch highlights). It was only through the grace of the referee that “The Last Stylebender” wasn’t flatlined completely with subsequent strikes.
Now, Pereira is waiting patiently for his next fight, which he has said he wants in April or May. Will Adesanya be ready and willing to face his rival again — who now holds a 3-0 record against him across two combat sports? Or will Izzy let Robert Whittaker have a go at the new champion first?