Saturday night on the prelims of UFC 273, we will see a battle of heavyweights where one man is searching for his 60th professional win. That man is none other than 44 year old Aleksei Oleinik (59-16-1) and he’s taking on Jared Vanderaa (12-7).
Both of these men enter UFC 273 on losing streaks so winning is of the upmost importance. For Jared Vanderaa, he’s been rather underwhelming since making his debut in the octagon last year.
Vanderaa earned a UFC contract on The Contender Series and entered the promotion with a record of 11-4. However, he’s just 1-3 in his four fights with the promotion with the lone win coming against Justin Tafa.
Standing across from Vanderaa is Oleinik who is riding a three-fight losing streak. The grappling expert has really struggled over the past couple of years. He had two back to back big wins in 2020 which included a win over former UFC champion Fabricio Werdum.
However, he then lost back-to-back fights by knockout. He returned last June where he lost a decision to Sergey Spivak. He’s looking for the elusive 60th win and he’s hoping to get it done at UFC 273.
UFC 273 Prediction
Another fight on this UFC 273 card where the game plan for both men is very clear. For Vanderaa, he’s going to look to keep this fight standing at all costs. He does have good power in his hands and we saw that on the regional scene.
Oleinik has shown off a very questionable chin getting knocked out four times since 2019. In addition to his questionable chin, Oleinik doesn’t show the same explosiveness in terms of his takedowns. That will happen when you continue to age.
A few years ago, I wouldn’t even think about who would win this fight. I would fully expect Oleinik to get him down and pickup the win at UFC 273 by submission or decision. However, what I’ve seen lately gives me pause.
I’m not sure Oleinik will be able to consistently get this fight down. I also think he might be a sitting duck on the feet with Vanderaa. While I wouldn’t really be shocked to see Oleinik get the win, I think he’s going to get stopped by the younger Venderaa in this one.
Prediction: Jared Vanderaa by TKO – Round 2