Alex Pereira expects Jiri Prochazka rematch next, Magomed Ankalaev ‘going to have to wait’

Alex Pereira expects a rematch in his immediate future after headlining the historic UFC 300 card in April.

Fresh off knocking out former champion Jamahal Hill in the first round to successfully defend his 205-pound title for the first time, the Brazilian believes he’ll soon see the man he took the belt from as his next opponent. Pereira revealed the news to MMA Fighting after he was asked about Jiri Prochazka potentially facing Magomed Ankalaev to determine a No. 1 contender in the division.

“I think if I wait for that fight, it would take too long,” Pereira said ahead of UFC 301. “I want to fight earlier than that. I think as far as we know, most likely the next in line is Jiri Prochazka.

“Ankalaev is going to have to wait a little bit. I know Jamahal Hill’s been talking some trash but he’s going to have to wait a little longer. I think Prochazka is the next one.”

Of course, Prochazka also fought at UFC 300, where he scored a $300,000 bonus for his stunning knockout of Aleksandar Rakic in the featured prelim on the card. That win got him back on track following a loss to Pereira this past November, which cost him the UFC light heavyweight title.

While Ankalaev also seems like a viable option following his finish of Johnny Walker in January, Pereira believes timing will dictate Prochazka getting the next shot at his belt.

“We told them when we want to fight,” Pereira said. “[We’ve not gotten anything official yet,] we don’t know, but they said due to the time frame, it will most likely be Prochazka. But anybody out there they want to put [in there], we’re good with it.”

It’s been less than six months since Pereira and Prochazka faced off, but even if there was more time between their meetings, Pereira doesn’t expect that he’s going to see a totally reinvented Prochazka in a potential rematch.

As much as Pereira promises that he’s constantly adding onto his own arsenal after becoming a two-division UFC champion in only 11 professional fights, he doesn’t expect Prochazka will be all that different if they meet a second time.

Prochazka has the experience edge over him, but Pereira feels like that might actual be a detriment when it comes to making the necessary changes to fix what went wrong the last time they met.

“I don’t think he will show up too much of a different fighter,” Pereira said. “Because compared to my evolution, that I have just a few MMA fights, he has over 25. He’s been fighting for a long time.

“So I think for every fighter you get to that point where you start evolving less due to the mileage that you have on this game, due to the amount of fights that you have with experience. So I think I’m going to evolve more from the previous fight than does.”

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