Michel Pereira slams Stephen Thompson for UFC 291 fight cancellation: “I thought he was a little coward”

By Susan Cox - October 17, 2023

Michel Pereira is slamming Stephen Thompson for his UFC 291 fight cancellation.

Stephen Thompson, Michel Pereira

UFC Vegas 81 took place this past weekend, Saturday, October 14th in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was Michel Pereira (29-11 MMA) going up against Andre Petroski (10-3 MMA) in a middleweight bout. The result was a TKO victory for the ‘Demolidor’, increasing his wins to 6 in a row in the Octagon.

Pereira was previously scheduled to fight Stephen Thompson (17-6 MMA) at welterweight this past July at UFC 291. Pereira weighed in over the welterweight limit and the bout was cancelled because Thompson declined to move forward with the fight.

While Pereira was very pleased with his victory over the weekend, he is still sour about the cancellation of his fight with ‘Wonderboy’.

Speaking through a translator on ‘The MMA Hour’, Pereira shared his thoughts on Thompson:

“I wanted to fight, of course. I was ready and prepared. I suffered a lot to lose weight for that fight, so obviously I was upset. I thought he was a little coward. In my entire career, I never saw anything like that, but at the same time, he was within his rights.”

Continuing Michel Pereira said (h/t MMAMania):

“So, what happened is it was 1.5 years without a fight. I had five fights canceled because of other fighters and I started gaining a lot of weight. On the week of the fight, a lot of weird things started happening to me, and then we realized it was because I was too strong, I had gained a lot of weight, and that was the challenge.”

As for if there will be another fight scheduled between the two, Pereira continued:

“He’s in a different weight class so I don’t think about fighting him any more. I’m at 185 and the opportunity has passed.”

Continuing, Pereira spoke about how he feels at middleweight:

“185 is the weight class where I feel better, my body is better, my training is easier. In the other weight class I suffered so much. I feel good in this weight class so that’s the weight class I’ll stay in for now. I only had to cut 10 pounds in the week before, I prepared more and just felt so much better — I just kept training.”

As for what is next for the 30-year-old, he has an opponent in mind:

“No preference, I don’t even know much about this new weight class, but one fight that I really like, I really enjoy him, he’s a bit of a showman, his name is Israel Adesanya. It would be a fun fight. I have nothing against him, just admiration. And I’d love to fight him.”

Would you like to see Michel Pereira vs Israel Adesanya in the future?

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Michel Pereira Stephen Thompson UFC