Volkan Oezdemir vs. 6th-ranked light heavyweight Ovince Saint Preux was the third fight on the main card tonight, (Sat., Feb. 4, 2017) at UFC Fight Night 104 live on FOX Sports 1 from inside Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.
OSP came into this fight needing a win. Although he had stepped in against Jon Jones in a short notice fight less than a year ago, he had been brutally knocked out by Jimi Manuwa in October. Volkan Oezdemir, meanwhile, was making his UFC debut, stepped into this bout on very short notice. He replaced Jan Blachowicz, who withdrew on January 21st due to injury.
Volkan opened with two kicks, then swarmed in with a series of hooks. He pinned OSP to the cage, using an underhook and head pressure to control the longer man. OSP nearly hit a whizzer, and got free in the scramble. He threw a front kick, then a jab. Volkan tagged him with an overhand, and OSP, his back to the fence, backed him off with a combination. Oezdemir ate a straight left from the southpaw OSP, then grabbed a clinch. He dropped for a double and OSP just managed to stay upright. St. Preux eventually got free and attempted to seize back momentum. They exchanged again, each eating shots. OSP was the one backing up and circling off the cage. He threw a hard roundhouse kick to the arms. Oezdemir landed a couple hooks and began to swarm, tagging OSP repeatedly. St. Preux grabbed a clinch and held the newcomer against the cage as the round ended. It had been a strong first round from Volkan.
St. Preux threw a body kick, then a straight from the same side. Volkan picked up the pressure, throwing hooks relentlessly. St. Preux grabbed a clinch and attempted a takedown, getting a trip. Oezdemir fought his way back to his feet along the cage. OSP was throwing his rear hand more often. As Volkan pressured him with his hands in a shell guard, OSP landed an uppercut then an overhand, tagging Oezdemir. St. Preux lunged in with a jab that missed. Oezdemir backed him to the fence with another combination. St. Preux threw back, and kept up a diet of straight kicks and jabs. Both men looked tired from the high pace of the fight. They exchanged one final combination before the bell.
The third round started fast, Oezdemir stepping in with another combination, and OSP happy backing up and countering. OSP ducked for a takedown, and after he missed it he roughed up Volkan with a punch-knee combination. They were both going all out, clearly tired but staying in each other’s faces. St. Preux was the one backed to the cage but he was landing his shots just as well. They clearly both wanted to knock the other man out, but St. Preux was landing at the higher clip. Volkan tagged him on the counter, then OSP returned the favor a moment later. St. Preux dug hard to the body, once and then again. Volkan hung tough and landed a hook, then a knee to the head from the clinch. St. Preux stunned him with a punch and swarmed, landing a series of combinations as Volkan shelled against the fence. He couldn’t get the finish before the bell sounded, though, and they embraced, both men clearly having pushed themselves to their limits in the final moments.
When the decision was read, Volkan was overjoyed, and thanked his team. It was a good result for the newcomer, defeating a ranked fighter in his debut, and a disappointing result for Ovince St. Preux.
Official result: Volkan Oezdemir def. Ovince St. Preux by split decision
See the full results and play-by-play from UFC Fight Night 104 here
Source:: mma mania