The co-main event of UFC Vegas 29 was very much a match-up of youth versus experience. They don’t get much more experienced, after all, than Aleksei Oleinik, with 75 professional fights to his name. Oleinik made his pro debut in mixed martial arts in 1996, a year after his opponent on Saturday, Sergey Spivak, was born.
That made Spivak a virtual baby in comparison.
It was Oleinik who opened things up with a leg kick, pressing forward. He looked to change levels, then thought better of it, closed the distance, and pressed Spivak against the fence. Spivak fought that off, with the pair moving back to center. A quick exchange followed, both men landing. More exchanges would follow, and while Oleinik had some success, Spivak was having more. He was also able to fight off all of Oleinik’s clinches. That resulted in Oleinik firing some big overhands, hunting a knockout in lieu of taking the fight down. He’d punch into another clinch, but Spivak escaped once more. Finally, with a minute to go, Oleinik dragged his opponent down and got hooks in. Oleinik transitioned to mount, but after a scarf-hold choke failed, he had to settle for an elbow and a few punches to the body.
Spivak was firing early in the second, but Oleinik answered back. He caught Spivak with a jab closing the distance, but was soon back to firing wild overhands. Oleinik then pulled Spivak down on top of him, tying up his opponent’s arms. Spivak tried to work in ground n’ pound, and finally managed to land some significant elbows, opening up a cut on Oleinik. Spivak then attempted an anaconda choke, but that allowed Oleinik to mount, and finish the round with another choke attempt.
After ten minutes, Oleinik was looking exhausted. He started the round with a few exchanges, Spivak getting the better of them. One of those exchanges opened a cut on the side of Oleinik’s head. He’d back Oleinik up against the fence, landing a few shots as Oleinik covered up. But Oleinik would shoot for a takedown soon after. When he couldn’t complete it, he ate several shots, but managed to survive, landed an elbow in the clinch, and went for a takedown again. Which Spivak fought off. Oleinik started to have some success with his punches, catching Spivak more than once. In the next takedown attempt, it was Spivak getting on top. He’d ride out the round there, Oleinik bloody, Spivak victorious.
Fighting smart and winning key positional battles helped Spivak get the win, and at 26, he has lots of time to develop.
Official Result: Sergey Spivak def. Aleksei Oleinik by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)