The UFC returns to Russia later today after making it’s octagon
debut in September 2018. This event will mark the promotion’s first visit to Saint Petersburg and their second visit to Russia.
UFC Fight Night 149 will feature a main-event, heavy-hitting Heavyweight bout between 7th ranked Alistair Overeem (44-17-1) and 9th ranked Alexey Oleinik (57-11-1). The main event was originally set to feature Overeem v Alexander Volkov, but Volkov was forced to withdraw from the bout due to injury and was replaced by another Russian in veteran Oleinik.
Between the two men, they have racked up a staggering 131 professional fights throughout their careers. Some may know Overeem from his PRIDE, DREAM and Strikeforce competitions days. ‘The Reem’ held the DREAM and Strikeforce Heavyweight titles, and was once the baddest man on the planet.
At the age of 38, the Dutchman shows no signs of slowing down and looks to use his fierce punching-power to put away opponents. While Oleinik is the much older at 41 years-old, he is known for his signature submission finishes in what will be a contrast of skills.
Both men come into this clash off the back of victories, with Overeem defeating Sergey Pavlovich at UFC Beijing in November 2018 via KO in the first round. Whilst Oleynik defeated MMA great Mark Hunt in the main event of UFC Moscow back in September, via rear naked choke also in the first round.
Overeem is the favourite going into the fight with his opponent the underdog. For my prediction, I can see Overeem looking to get Oleynik out of there in the first round and use his takedown defence well. The Reem will be focused on the takedowns of Oleinik, and this may cause him to over-extend his reach, leaving himself opened for a takedown.
I expect the Russian to look for his signature submission that we are used to seeing, and win either by rear-naked choke, ezekiel choke or arm triangle choke. The event start at an early 3pm UK time, live on BT Sport at 4pm and main-card 5pm.
Check our odds out at Toalsbet.com