Eugene Bareman: Sean Strickland ‘fumbled the bag’ against Alex Pereira at UFC 276

City Kickboxing head coach Eugene Bareman thinks Sean Strickland messed up big time in his UFC 276 fight with Alex Pereira.

Strickland (25-4 MMA, 12-4 UFC) was knocked out in the first round by Pereira this past Saturday in Las Vegas, where he was content to stand and trade with the former two-division Glory kickboxing champion until he got caught.

Bareman, who coaches Israel Adesanya, saw Strickland as more of a worthy challenger for the UFC middleweight champion than Pereira (6-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC). The fact that Adesanya and Strickland got into a heated exchange during the UFC 276 pre-fight news conference added some spice to a potential matchup.

Scroll to continue with content

Bareman was disappointed to see Strickland lose out on the title opportunity.

“Sean Strickland fumbled the bag,” Bareman told Submission Radio. “Yeah, I don’t know. Like, come on, man. That, I thought, was the fight. But he fumbled the bag. I don’t want to talk too much on their fight, but look, man, did he think he wasn’t fighting one of the best strikers in the world that can take you out if you stand in front of him? Did he?

“Like, your arrogance can get you in trouble. Like, yeah, I recognize when people come from another sport what they are and give them their due respect that’s… yeah, he fumbled the bag. But all power to him. I hope he gets back in a position where Israel can fight him, because I know it’s a fight that Israel really wants. So all the best to Sean.”


Israel Adesanya welcomes Alex Pereira challenge in UFC: You see 'what happens when my back's against the wall'

Sean Strickland reacts to KO loss at UFC 276: 'I'm going to be sad for a while'


Adesanya (23-1 MMA, 12-1 UFC) notched his fifth title defense when he defeated Jared Cannonier in the main event of UFC 276. He is expected to face Pereira next and while Bareman still think it’s too soon for “Poatan,” he understands the allure behind the matchup.

“Again, the UFC are brilliant at what they do,” Bareman said. “They’re brilliant at marketing. They’ve seen a story there, and they pushed this guy to a position that he, like, who’s gonna argue with me that he doesn’t deserve? How can, like, it’s ridiculous that he’s being put in the position to basically go for the title off the back of two wins over Israel in a completely different sport after beating just Sean Strickland. I mean, that’s crazy. But also, as much as a purist like me thinks that’s crazy, also I understand how the UFC machine works. And they see a marketable fight there, and they’re doing what they need to do.”


UFC 276 post-event facts: Alexander Volkanovski joins exclusive club with 12-0 UFC start