UFC Vegas 19 is a packed card giving us many tremendous fights, including the one you all came for: Arlovski vs Aspinall. Will the legendary veteran and former UFC heavyweight champion get it done? Or will it be the surging British prospect to capture the win?
The card is chocked full of awesome Heavyweight matchups. So much so it could almost be considered a divisional showcase by Dana White and the UFC brass. Serghei Spivak and Jared Vandeera will be the first big men to take the cage, followed up by Aleksei Oleinik and Chris Daukas. Then, Arlovski vs Aspinall will be the next Heavyweight clash we witness! Who could forget the main event of course? Where Curtis “Razor” Blaydes says he will utilize his grappling to hopefully slay “The Black Beast” Derrick Lewis! Check out the full lineup here for UFC Vegas 19!
Arlovski vs Aspinall Fighter Breakdown
Andrei Arlovski (30-19-2NC MMA, 19-13-1NC UFC)
At the age of 42, Andrei Arlovski continues to defy the rules of aging. Most recently fighting Tanner Boser at UFC ESPN 17, “The Pitbull” faced yet another spry, young killer desperate to take his head off and collect the scalp of a legend. Yet instead, Arlovski took the younger man to school and won by decision in what was a good fight.
Predominantly a striker, we’ve seen a decrease in knockouts out of “The Pitbull” with age. His last TKO/KO was in 2015, against Travis Browne at UFC 187. Since then, we’ve kind of seen an evolution to the game of Andrei Arlovski semi-similar to that of Alistair Overeem. Instead of taking fights to the ground and finishing opponents like Overeem, Arlovski has opted to fight a more nuanced and tactical slower-paced battle on the feet.
A far cry from the emphatic knockout artist we’ve seen in the past, yet “The Pitbull” undoubtedly still carries the power to finish a fight. Arlovski vs Aspinall has the makings for a classic battle, or it could end in an instant!
Getting his start in MMA over 20 years ago, Andrei Arlovski will forever go down as a legend. “The Pitbull” made a start to his pro career inside the organization of M-1, back in 1999! Going on to compete for a conglomeration of fabled promotions such as Affliction (who could forget the Fedor fight?), Strikeforce, World Series of Fighting, Elite XC and even ONE FC.
Tom Aspinall (9-2 MMA, 2-0 UFC)
Tom Aspinall has all the makings of a potentially great fighter. He even has a loss due to a 12-6 illegal elbow disqualification like the GOAT Jon Jones. Satire aside, this British prospect has won every fight in his professional and amateur career (except for two) by either TKO/KO or sub. Making Aspinall another great hope for UK MMA.
Making his UFC debut at UFC Fight Island 3 against Jake Collier, it took only 45 seconds for Aspinall to shut out the lights with a right cross and enter the Heavyweight division with a bang.
Next up along the road to Arlovski vs Aspinall would be Alan Baudot at UFC Fight Island 5. This time, Tom Aspinall would utilize his ground and pound to secure the TKO/KO only about a minute and a half into the fight. Securing another impressive win, and obviously earning this tremendous push by the UFC with Arlovski vs Aspinall.
Matchup Breakdown and Prediction
Arlovski vs Aspinall has all the makings of a great fight as I said previously, and it features two technical strikers. Experience is definitely on the side of Arlovski, however, you could also say that Aspinall will undoubtedly be the faster and more athletic man.
Grappling wise, both men are adept but not known for their prowess in this area. A submission by either fighter is always possible, but this battle will probably remain standing most of the time.
Does Aspinall have what it takes to shut the lights out? It appears on paper that this is what the fight comes down to. It’s a matchup we’ve come to expect from the UFC. Big-name vs Big prospect, and we’ve also seen that type of match end in different ways.
For example, think Weidman vs Silva, and then think Overeem vs Sakai. Not saying this matchup is similar in any way to those except for the commonality between that of a Big-name vs a Big prospect. By the end of Arlovski vs Aspinall, we will either see another fighter transform into a legend killer, or another legend continues their legacy.
Arlovski vs Aspinall is such a great fight to me, and I can’t stop saying it! The battle with Tanner Boser was slow-paced, and it let Arlovski control the fight and run away with it. If I’m Aspinall, I’m coming in with the gameplan to dictate the fight. Force “The Pitbull” to brawl and see if his chin can sustain the power.
I think the fight either ends with a quick KO from Aspinall, or Arlovski takes him to school. I’ve got Arlovski via decision!
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