Jan Blachowicz picks Alex Pereira to beat Jamahal Hill: ‘Sometimes it’s hard coming back in great shape’

Jan Blachowicz thinks the long layoff will likely impact Jamahal Hill vs. Alex Pereira.

Many expect Hill (12-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) to get the next shot at newly crowned light heavyweight champion Pereira (9-2 MMA, 6-1 UFC), who stopped Jiri Prochazka by knockout Nov. 11 to claim the vacant belt at UFC 295.

Having lost to Pereira in a close decision he thought he won, Blachowicz (29-10-1 MMA, 12-7-1 UFC) gives “Poatan” the edge over Hill, who will return from an achilles tendon rupture that required surgery.

“We’ll see how he’s going to feel after the injury because sometimes it’s hard coming back in great shape,” Blachowicz told Middle Easy. “You still got something in the back of your head that you have surgery and you’re coming back. You don’t know how your leg is going to feel. So, I don’t know. In this moment, I would put my money on Pereira.”

Blachowicz is eager to run things back with Pereira. If he can get past Aleksandar Rakic in their rematch at UFC 297 on Jan. 20, he hopes to emerge as the No. 1 contender.

“If Pereira will fight against Jamahal Hill and he’s going to win, and I believe that I’m going to win against Rakic, so this rematch, they have to give it to me because our fight was split decision, and I believe the referee gave a bad decision,” Blachowicz said. “So, they have to give me this rematch.”

Blachowicz is even willing to be a reserve for the title fight between Pereira and Hill.

“I can be backup fighter, no problem,” Blachowicz said. “You just sit over there waiting, watch the fight, and they give you some money. So, why not?”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 297.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie