Ahead of Saturday’s showdown with Alex Oliveira, welterweight Niko Price suggested that their UFC Vegas 38 bout had the potential to be a Fight of the Year candidate.
That’s the sort of lofty expectation that can lead to disappointment. But truth be told, Price and “Cowboy” Oliveira were both more than capable of putting on dazzling fights in the octagon.
The fight opened with an exchange of leg kicks, before Price and Oliveira exchanged strikes up top. The led to a clinch along the fence with Price in control. From there, Price put Oliveira on his back and went to work in half guard. Price kept the pressure on, with “Cowboy” trapped along the cage wall. Plenty of control time for Price, though he wasn’t able to do much damage thanks to Oliveira’s defense.
Round two had Oliveira display a speed advantage on the feet, but that didn’t stop Price from pressing forward. Price was then dropped while firing off a leg kick, and Oliveira got on top. He moved to side control, and absolutely smothered Price, who struggled to find a way out. Oliveira was able to trap an arm more than once, and looked to be in his element, finishing the round in full control, dropping hammer fists.
The third saw a fun scrap play out. Price landed a heavy right just over three minutes in. Toward the end of the round, Oliveira landed a big left hand, and locked on to his opponent with a bock lock. He tried to climb the back of his opponent by the fence, but Price bucked him off, and was able to finish the round on top in a very close frame. Price dropped hammer fists right to the final buzzer.
BIG right from the Hybrid 👀👊 @NikoHybridPrice
— UFC (@ufc) October 3, 2021
Official Result: Niko Price def. Alex Oliveira by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)