Light heavyweight contenders Volkan Oezdemir and Nikita Krylov were both looking to put together a modest win streak at UFC 280.
Both men, in fact, were coming in off a single win, Oezdemir over Paul Craig, and Krylov against Alexander Gustafsson. The aforementioned, Oezdemir, looked extremely impressive over a tough puzzle in Craig, and Krylov similarly against ‘The Mauler’.
As expected, the fight started off with both men trading extremely heavily. Oezdemir began landing at will with a blistering right hand, causing Krylov to try and level change. The sloppiness of Krylov resulted in him lunging for a single leg, briefly getting the fight to the mat with Oezdemir popping right back up. Krylov weathered the Oezdemir storm and landed a beautiful knee of his own, wobbling the former title contender. Again, Krylov battled for a takedown, and ended up on the back of Oezdemir. After struggling to sink in the rear-naked-choke, “No Time” got back to his feet and saw out the opening round.
Both man came into the second still wearing the pressure of round one. It took Krylov just over a minute to score himself a takedown, this time, managing to keep Oezdemir on the ground and clocking himself some control time. Not long after, he transitioned to the back of Volkan trying to lock in the hooks for another rear-naked-choke. With two minutes left of the round, Krylov unleashed a beautiful combination, starting with an uppercut and ending with a left high kick. Crowd chants of “NIKITA” bellowed out as Krylov once again found himself in the guard of Oezdemir on the mat. Bizarrely after how the first two rounds went, we were set to see a third.
Again, round three began with a Krylov barrage followed by a level change. Another takedown successfully landed on the tired Oezdemir. The accumulation of control time played pivotal in the fight, as Krylov managed to yet again keep Oezdemir on the mat. Marc Goddard saw enough of the mat time and stood both men up, much to the joy of the fans. Despite Oezdemir looking extremely tired, he still managed to land himself a few dangerous right hands. Yet another Krylov takedown tells you all you need to know about this fight.
Make that 2 straight wins for @KrylovUFC! 👏
— UFC (@ufc) October 22, 2022
Official decision: Nikita Krylov def. Volkan Oezdemir via unanimous decision 30-27, 29-28, 29-28