Michel Pereira is taking a break from cutting weight to compete in the welterweight division. Sources with knowledge of the matchup have confirmed that Pereira (28-11, 2 NC) will face Marc-Andre Barriault (16-6, 1 NC) in a middleweight bout at UFC Vegas 81 on October 14.
This marks Pereira’s first fight scheduled above the 170-pound welterweight limit since he participated in an openweight bout against Dae Sung Kim in February 2019 before joining the UFC. It also marks his debut in the middleweight division for the promotion.
The decision to move up in weight was prompted by Pereira’s recent struggles with weight cuts. He notably missed weight by three pounds for a scheduled bout against Stephen Thompson, which was supposed to take place at UFC 291. Pereira’s failure to make weight led to Thompson and his team declining the fight. This incident marked the second time Pereira had missed weight while competing in the UFC.
Barriault, hailing from Canada, aims for his third consecutive victory and his fourth win in five fights as he enters the UFC APEX arena in October. He comes off back-to-back wins over Eryk Anders and Julian Marquez.