UFC St. Petersburg did not disappoint. With veterans and rising stars alike, this weekend’s fight card gave fans the knockouts they needed.
Never. Sleep. On. A. Russian. Card. Russians don’t believe in decisions and go out for the finish every time. Again, never sleep on a Russian card. That said, UFC St. Petersburg was no exception to the rule. With many people overlooking the card due to lack of name power, UFC St. Petersburg delivered a great card, one of the best in the young ESPN era. Let’s take a look at some of the fighters on the card and what’s next for them.
Krzysztof Jotko Dominates in Win Over Alen Amedovski
Jokto was once the hottest middleweight prospect coming into the UFC. Entering the promotion at 12-0, then going 6-1, people were excited to see Jotko make a run for gold. Then he was struck by a three-fight skid and his days in the UFC seemed numbered. It was do or die at UFC St. Petersburg for Jokto and he got the job done. With a 30-25, 30-26, and 30-26 score card, Jotko is back on track and ready to get back to his winning ways. Jotko then went on to call out light heavyweight rising star Johnny Walker…to a dance off.
— Krzysztof Jotko (@JotkoMMA) April 21, 2019
Alen Amedovski need not fret. The Bellator veteran may have lost the fight, but he will live on to fight another day in the UFC.
Next Opponent for Krzysztof Jotko: Uriah Hall Rematch, Tim Boetsch
Next Opponent for Alen Amedovski: Ryan James, Adam Yandiev
Roxanne Modafferi Derails the Antonina Shevchenko Hype Train
Having another Shevchenko in the UFC isn’t bad. Especially when the other is UFC flyweight champ Valentina Shevchenko. Many were looking forward to the debut of Antonina Shevchenko. Roxanne Modafferi most of all. Roxanne took the -360 favorite down repeatedly and won a close, contested fight against the new prospect. The split decision went Modafferi’s way.
All isn’t lost for Shevchenko either. She took on a very seasoned fighter, one with 38 fights under her belt, and gave her hell. Shevchenko still has plenty of promise on the big stage. This is just a minor setback.
Next Opponent for Roxanne Modafferi: Nicco Montaño Rematch, Jennifer Maia Rematch
Next Opponent for Antonina Shevchenko: Paige VanZant, Gillian Robertson
Sergey Pavlovich Makes Quick Work of Marcelo Golm
Sergey Pavlovich was one of those hottest prospects from Russia coming into the UFC. Unfortunately due to weird matchmaking, he got paired up with Alistair Overeem in his first fight in the Octagon. Well, it seems he bounced back from that loss pretty well. With a knockout in just over a minute, Pavlovich reminded us why he was so coveted in Fight Nights Global. He’s still a great prospect in the heavyweight division.
Marcelo Golm has fallen to a three-fight losing streak, unfortunately. Now at 1-3 in the UFC, it’s unclear if the Brazilian will be fighting again in the promotion this time around. It might be time for Golm to return to the regional and sharpen his skills even more. With a couple wins, it won’t be hard to find himself back in a position to return to the UFC.
Next Opponent for Sergey Pavlovich: Ben Rothwell, Andrei Arlovski/Augusto Sakai winner
Next Opponent for Marcelo Golm: Dmitriy Sosnovskiy, Jeff Hughes
Islam Makhachev is Ready for a Ranked Opponent
Islam Makhachev might be the best Russian prospect in the UFC. With a huge fight against Arman Tsarukyan, Islam is here to stay. The two put on the best fight of the night, earning them the Fight of the Night bonus. Makhachev is completely ready to take on a ranked fighter in the already-stacked lightweight division.
Despite getting handed the loss, Arman Tsarukyan’s stock rose at UFC St. Petersburg. His first fight in the UFC was a show for the fans, just what the UFC brass wants. He will get rewarded and most likely fight up in his next fight, deservingly so.
Next Opponent for Islam Makhachev: James Vick, Alexander Hernandez
Next Opponent for Arman Tsarukyan: Marc Diakiese, Matt Frevola
Overeem Blasts Oleinik, Back in Title Contention
The main event showed us two fan favorites of the heavyweight division. Alistair Overeem was on the receiving end of an ass-whooping from Aleksei Oleinik early on, then turned things around. Reem got in his usual ground and pound that has put out many of his adversaries. Most importantly, Overeem showed his superb clinch work against a guy many people do not want to stay close to.
Oleinik is still a monster. His ground game will get him right back to where he needs to be to start contending for a title once again. Unfortunately, Overeem was just on another level this night and got the win. A quick turnaround for both is likely.
Next Opponent for Alistair Overeem: Derrick Lewis, Francis Ngannou/Junior dos Santos Loser
Next Opponent for Aleksei Oleinik: Cain Velasquez, Alexander Volkov