Aleksei Oleinik
The Boa Constrictor

Russia

Set for main event clash
HeavyweightUFC
August 3, 2020
Oleinik enters fight week as approximately a (+195) betting underdog for his heavyweight matchup against Derrick Lewis at UFC on ESPN+ 32 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
This matchup will serve as the night's main event, which would presumably help Oleinik due to Lewis' known cardio issues, though Oleinik has yet to get past Round 3 in the UFC himself. In fact, none of the 43-year-old's astounding 73 professional fights have seen the "championship rounds." The two men match up similarly from a physical standpoint, with Oleinik having a slight reach advantage and Lewis having a slight height advantage. Lewis has significantly more finishing power in his hands, which likely led to him being the favorite, but "The Boa Constrictor" will always have deadly grappling in his arsenal. The key for Oleinik will be to avoid the heavy shots early and get Lewis to the mat, which is certainly possible considering Lewis has just a 53 percent takedown defense. Both of Oleinik's 2019 losses in the UFC were via first-round knockout, however, so weathering the early storm is definitely easier said than done.
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On track to fight Lewis on Aug. 8
HeavyweightUFC
June 16, 2020
Oleinik (undisclosed) is expected to take on Derrick Lewis in a heavyweight fight Aug. 8 at a yet-to-be-determined location in the United States, Damon Martin of MMAFighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
The UFC plans to have the Oleinik-Lewis showdown serve as the headliner for the Aug. 8 card. Oleinik returns to the Octagon riding a two-fight winning streak, which includes a victory over Fabricio Werdum in his most recent bout. The 42-year-old's inclusion on the Aug. 8 card suggests he's on track to receive full medical clearance from the unspecified injury he suffered in the win over Werdum that resulted in him being hit with a 180-day medical suspension.
Hit with 180-day medical suspension
HeavyweightUFC
May 11, 2020
Oleinik was handed a 180-day medical suspension Monday, MMAJunkie.com reports.
ANALYSIS
The specific nature of Oleinik's injury was not disclosed, but he'll now be out until November unless cleared by a physician. He defeated Fabricio Werdum by split decision on Saturday but evidently took enough of a beating that he'll be sidelined for several months.
Decisions Fabricio Werdum
HeavyweightUFC
May 9, 2020
Oleinik defeated Fabricio Werdum via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28) at UFC 249 on Saturday in Jacksonville.
ANALYSIS
It may have very well been the biggest victory of Oleinik's career, and that's saying something considering he has been fighting professional since November 1996. Oleinik came into this fight noticeably slimmer than we have seen him recently, and he got off to a quick start. Werdum looked rusty following a long layoff and Oleinik pounded him on the feet in the early stages of the fight. Things got a bit hairy for Oleinik as his gas tank quickly emptied, but the returning Brazilian was unable to take advantage of the opportunity. Oleinik remains a world-class submission specialist at age 43 (next month) and that alone gives him a chance in most any fight in which he competes. Oleinik has been in the game for well over two decades, has more than 70 pro fights under his belt and is still ticking.
Booked for UFC 249
HeavyweightUFC
February 13, 2020
Oleinik will face Fabricio Werdum (suspension) in a heavyweight matchup at UFC 249 on May 9, MMAJunkie.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Oleinik most recently defeated Maurice Greene via submission (armbar) at UFC 246 in January, and he'll look to put together back-to-back wins after recording a 3-3 record over his last six fights. Werdum is returning from a suspension from the USADA that was handed down in September of 2018, but he carries a 23-7-1 record over his professional career. Oleinik has an advantage in height, while Werdum carries a slight reach advantage. Even at the age of 42, Olenik typically has a grappling advantage against any opponent he meets in the Octagon. That won't necessarily be the case here, however, as even with the layoff, Werdum is regarded as one of the best heavyweight grapplers in the sport's history. Presumably due to that reason, Oleinik enters as approximately a (+265) betting underdog.
Earns 46th submission win of career
HeavyweightUFC
January 18, 2020
Oleinik defeated Maurice Greene via submission (armbar) at 4:38 of Round 2 at UFC 246 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
For those scoring at home, that is the 46th submission victory of Oleinik's storied career. This one didn't come easy. The big Russian attempted all sorts of submission attempts that Greene managed to somehow survive before an armbar in the later stages of Round 2 finally did the trick. Oleinik will turn 43 years of age in June but he remains one of the sport's elite submission specialists. The issue for Oleinik is that he doesn't move well and struggles mightily in the striking game. He ate some massive shots from Greene in the early stages of the fight and looked wobbled at times but never actually went down. Oleinik is 3-3 in his past six fights dating back to November 2017.