UFC Jacksonville sees Ovince Saint Preux (24-13) in another big fight — but it’s not in his usual light heavyweight stomping grounds.
Instead, OSP is moving up to heavyweight, for an interesting bit of matchmaking against Ben Rothwell.
Saint Preux’s status as a former title contender at 205lbs, and Rothwell’s veteran status among the big men, make this a rather intriguing fight. It figures that the light heavyweight will have a speed advantage, but how will his power translate to heavyweight? And with both fighters proficient at submissions — OSP with the Von Flue choke, Rothwell with the Gogo choke — who will have the edge there?
While OSP plans on a return to light heavyweight, should he come out on top against Rothwell, there’s a chance he sticks around the UFC’s heaviest weight class a little longer.
“It’s one of them things where, if I see a fight that presents itself at heavyweight, I will take it,” Saint Preux said during the UFC Jacksonville virtual media day. “Why not? But I’m naturally a 205lb’er. As long as I stick to my diet and do everything well, I usually have an easy cut, and I usually have a great fight.”
So you might just see him go on a run for the belt at heavyweight, if the opportunity is there. “If I can yes, definitely. Why not? I’ll do that in the 205 division and the heavyweight division”
Later, OSP, who came in at 240.5lbs for his fight with Rothwell on Wednesday night, deemed himself a “tweener.” A fighter, in other words, sitting between two weight classes.
“The heavyweight division, with me, right now, you’d probably call me a tweener right now, between the heavyweight division and the light heavyweight division,” he observed. But, he added, he has an edge in one of those weight classes.
“Sometimes, some of the guys within the heavyweight division right now, you look at them and think ‘okay, I can get ’em, I can get ’em, I can get ’em,'” said Saint Preux. “But then after that you start getting into that margin of the top five, and you start scratching your head like ‘well, it’s going to be a good fight, but it’ll be more of a concerning fight.’ Then you get down to the 205lb division, as long as I come in healthy, as long as I come in with a good weight cut, I know I can beat pretty much everybody in the 205lb division.”
Watch the full UFC Jacksonville media day virtual scrum with Ovince Saint Preux above!