WagerBop’s hot streak of MMA tips is still going strong.
We hit both of our picks at UFC 236 last weekend, tipping Dustin Poirier to defeat Max Holloway as well as Israel Adesanya to defeat Kelvin Gastelum. We took home 2.44 units of profit, meaning that two $100 bets were to help you gain an extra $244.
We’re now up to 12.11 units of profit for the year. Again, if you’re betting $100 on each selection, that’s a profit of $1,211 already.
This weekend, it’s all about UFC Fight Night 149 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The event is set to take place on Saturday, April 20, and it’s a good one for those are looking to bet on the main event.
Besides that, it’s a tricky slate of fights. With an abundance of Russian fighters competing in front of their fans at home, it’s tough to reliably pick winners considering that the cageside judges can and will be influenced by crowd noise. We’re going to stay clear from most of the card and just tip the winner of the main event that surely won’t last more than two rounds.
Alistair Overeem vs. Aleksei Oleinik
Alistair Overeem vs. Aleksei Oleinik is certainly not going to be the most-watched bout in UFC history, but it’s an intriguing matchup between two fast-finishing heavyweight fighters nonetheless.
On one hand, we have Alistair Overeem and his incredible kickboxing ability. On the other, it’s Aleksei Oleinik and his freakish ability to secure rare and relatively unseen submissions.
It’s almost unfair to start talking about Overeem’s kickboxing ability first of all because he has developed into a relatively well-rounded mixed martial artist over the years. Sure, his striking is the standout – and will be a key factor in this fight – but he also has notable top control, superb clinch work, and adequate defensive wrestling.
After a two-fight skid that included a brutal knockout defeat at the hands of Francis Ngannou and then a third-round ground and pound loss to Curtis Blaydes, Overeem has recently returned to winning ways. “The Demolition Man” picked up a first-round win against Sergey Pavlovich after landing in top position and brutalizing him with strikes from the top.
Aleksei Oleinik honestly doesn’t appear to be a dangerous heavyweight fighter in any way. With his lack of athleticism combined with slow and plodding footwork and subpar striking, Oleinik has done incredibly well to not only hold a positive winning record in the UFC (6-2) but to have also beaten a list of mid-tier heavyweight fighters such as Mark Hunt and Travis Browne.
It’s almost comical how Oleinik continues to win fights, but he does it and he certainly demands respect for his world-class submission skills. A combat sambo world champion, Oleinik has some of the best strangling ability in the UFC today. Whether it’s from the bottom position, on top, from the clinch, or from the back, Oleinik can snatch a neck and choke his opponent out when it’s least expected.
The pathway to victory for both fighters is quite clear, so let’s take a look at the odds before diving into a more in-depth breakdown.
Alistair Overeem vs. Aleksei Oleinik Odds
Overeem vs. Oleinik breakdown
Overeem has gone through so many points of evolution in his career to date that it’s hard to pinpoint exactly where he’s at right now. But training at Elevation Fight Team after losing to Curtis Blaydes is only going to bring out a new and improved version of the fighter we’ve come to know and appreciate over the years.
One of the most efficient strikers in the UFC, Overeem patiently sits back and waits for his opportunities to strike. He rarely sets anything up and is happy to remain patient. This will be an interesting contrast against Oleinik’s rapid pace and forward movement, as the Russian fighter loves to rush forward and close the distance immediately.
When he does, however, he leaves plenty of opportunity for his opponent to land and land well. As much as Oleinik’s striking defense is a liability, he also has particularly powerful hands that can result in a meme-KO if he lands his overhand punches on Overeem. So there’s that to consider, of course. But mostly, Overeem should be way too classy for Oleinik on the feet.
It’s at close range and the clinch where Overeem has some tools that others who lost to Oleinik didn’t. Overeem is devastating from the clinch position, where he can ram heavy knees and close-range strikes into his opponent. He’s also decent at breaking free from troublesome positions, which means he’ll likely not stay too long if Oleinik attempts to wrap up a fight-ending submission from the clinch.
And besides that, Oleinik doesn’t have an impressive takedown game at all, meaning that Overeem should be able to keep this one upright.
Expect Overeem to sit back and wait for his moments. He’ll piece Oleinik up with hard kicks to the body and thunderous strikes to the head, but he’ll also be careful enough not to advance and cause a scramble that might lead to him on the mat with the dangerous submission artist.
If Overeem stays true to our expectations, this one should be walk in the park for “The Demolition Man.”
Bet on Alistair Overeem to win: -235 at BetOnline