Daniel Cormier explains why Jan Blachowicz and Alex Pereira won’t be fighting for the vacant light heavyweight title at UFC 291

By Susan Cox - July 19, 2023

Daniel Cormier is explaining why Jan Blachowicz and Alex Pereira won’t be fighting for the vacant light heavyweight title at UFC 291.

Daniel Cormier, UFC

UFC 291 takes place on Saturday, July 29th  at the Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. The co-main event will feature Jan Blachowicz (29-9 MMA) vs Alex Pereira (7-2 MMA).

Blachowicz, 40, last fought Magomed Ankalaev (17-1 MMA) in December of last year at UFC 282. The result was deemed a draw.

Pereira, 36, after losing to Israel Adesanya (24-2 MMA) via TKO this past April at UFC 287, will be making his debut at light heavyweight when he meets Blachowicz later this month.

Cormier, speaking on his ESPN MMA’s ‘DC & RC Show’ spoke about why Pereira and Blachowicz won’t be fighting for the vacant title:

“When we look forward to what’s happening next, dude, Jan Błachowicz and Alex Pereira, I thought, ‘Wow, maybe you make that the title fight,’ because that’s what happened with Glover and Jamahal. I called (UFC matchmaker) Mick Maynard, Mick goes, ‘It doesn’t make any sense.’ He goes, ‘Jiří was supposed to fight for the belt. He was gonna fight Jamahal when he came back.’ He goes, ‘Now you make an interim championship fight, for what? They’re just still the number one contender to fight for a vacant championship when Jiří comes back.”

Continuing Daniel Cormier said (h/t MMANews):

“So while the fight between Alex and Jan Błachowicz became more important, it didn’t become as important as originally thought because they’re not gonna leave with an actual belt. But the result will be the same. The winner of that fight will fight Jiří Procházka when he returns for a championship opportunity. Then you hope that whoever wins that fight and becomes the champ, they can hold on to the title or defend it so that when Jamahal Hill comes back, he’s been promised a title fight.”

So there you have it, Daniel Cormier has outlined the stategy for both fighters going forward. Both fighters will by vying for a spot opposite the returning Jiří Procházka (29-3 MMA). Pereira will be aiming to get his first victory at light heavyweight and Blachowicz will be attempting to add another W to his resume.

Who do you think will come out the victor at UFC 291?

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Alex Pereira Daniel Cormier Jan Blachowicz UFC