Alex Pereira: Celebration after KO of Jamahal Hill at UFC 300 'the least that I could do' after trash talk


LAS VEGAS – Alex Pereira felt it was essential to give Jamahal Hill a taste of his own medicine after scoring a knockout in the UFC 300 main event.

Pereira (10-2 MMA, 7-1 UFC) defended his light heavyweight title for the first time Saturday at T-Mobile Arena when, following a low blow that he waved off referee Herb Dean from halting the action, landed a huge punch that dropped Hill (12-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) and spelled the end of the fight inside the first round.

With Hill downed on the canvas, Pereira taunted his challenger in somewhat uncharacteristic fashion. The Brazilian said he did so after Hill showed respect early in the week, but then opted to be bold with his comments and actions at the pre-fight press conference and ceremonial weigh-ins.

“I spoke with my team before,” Pereira told MMA Junkie and other reporters through an interpreter at the UFC 300 post-fight press conference. “I wanted to fight five rounds, but if the knockout would happen that was what I was going to do. He behaved not so good. He was respectful during the week then he did what he did during the press conference and the weigh-ins. So honestly, the least that I could do was just that to him.”

Pereira, 36, said it was a conscious decision to wave off the low blow stoppage. He was finding his comfort zone in the fight, and didn’t want to give Hill a chance to reset.

“I was starting to find my distance,” Pereira said. “I started using leg kicks from the beginning so I could find his distance. He’s a southpaw so it’s a little harder. My game plan was to start throwing hands after that. So then he threw the groin shot, but it did not hurt me so much so I chose to keep pushing so I could find the distance, and I capitalized on the moment.”

The victory by Pereira was all the more impressive by the fact he came into the fight compromised. UFC CEO Dana White revealed he suffered a broken toe in the weeks leading up to the fight, which Pereira confirmed, but said he simply couldn’t withdraw from a main event spot on arguably the biggest card in UFC history.

“That happened in the last couple of weeks,” Pereira said. “It’s not something that I was going to pull out of the fight. I had to push through. It happened in the moment of my camp that I had to be slowing down my training, so I had to just push through.”

Despite the injury, Pereira reiterated what he said in the octagon to Joe Rogan in that he would be willing to make a three-week turnaround to fight at UFC 301 in Brazil on May 4. Whether that happens remains to be seen, but for now, Pereira intends to revel in his victory on such a big card.

“All my moments are special,” Pereira said. “I always say my best moment is still to be the next moment. But this was a very special night for me. Still sinking everything in. I want to enjoy this a little bit more. And then I’ll enjoy the next one.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 300.

Be sure to visit the MMA Junkie Instagram page and YouTube channel to discuss this and more content with fans of mixed martial arts.


Related Posts