By Mike Bohn |
January 28, 2021 8: 00 pm
Alistair Overeem thinks the total lot is clicking the intention in which it wants as he attempts to tune down the UFC heavyweight title at some stage within the ultimate chapter of his career.
Overeem (47-18 MMA, 12-7 UFC), who has received four of his past five bouts, will get a stern take a look at in his next one as he meets Russian striker Alexander Volkov (32-8 MMA, 6-2 UFC) within the UFC Battle Night 184 important tournament, which takes intention Feb. 6 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas and streams on ESPN+.
It’s a battle Overeem needs to bewitch if he needs to total his aim of including the UFC heavyweight belt to a combat sports activities resume that comprises titles in Strikeforce, DREAM and K-1. He changed into supposed to battle Volkov in April 2019 before it fell aside, but he’s comfortable it changed into rescheduled and feels improbable about it figuring out in his decide.
“He’s positively grew as a fighter, but I also grew as a fighter (since we were final booked),” Overeem suggested MMA Junkie. “I contemplate I’m the most unpleasant to battle appropriate now. I’m within the height performance I’ve ever been or am, so I’m lawful very infected the battle is occurring now. Timing for me is ultimate and it is.”
At 40, Overeem has confirmed over his fresh stretch of fights that he stays elite. He’s No. 6 within the latest USA TODAY Sports activities/MMA Junkie heavyweight rankings, and is scheduled to snatch on No. 7-ranked Volkov in a five-round headliner.
“He’s (finest) all the intention in which by,” Overeem acknowledged of Volkov. “He’s bought kicks, he’s bought hand strikes, he’s bought floor, he’s bought grappling. I contemplate he’s unpleasant in each intention. He’s bought reach, so it’s going to be a captivating battle. But I basically feel very ready. Camp has been finest. It’s going to be a radiant battle.”
No matter aloof going actual, Overeem has made it abundantly sure this is his final push toward the tip. UFC Battle Night 184 represents the 94th bout of his combat sports activities career, and he’s now not attempting to fabricate this forever.
He feels one other likelihood at gold is properly internal reach, but wouldn’t express definitively if a setback in opposition to Volkov would space off him to throw within the towel, or if he would rebuild once again. What Overeem can express with certainty, even supposing, is that he feels finest about the situation he’s in appropriate now.
“There positively is momentum because we’re two wins (in a row),” Overeem acknowledged. “I contemplate my fights are finest, they’re thrilling. I contemplate we’ve lawful bought to retain this trajectory going and one other title shot will seemingly be there, and that will seemingly be my final because my time is operating out, which is k. I’ve had a great career, I’m having a great career. But we also need to be life like, and that’s a bit of bit the do the ultimate budge comes from. I’m now not going to retain combating till I’m 45. It’s going to be one final budge, then it’s going to be thanks each person for watching, and gape you within the next existence.”
If Overeem will get his hands on a UFC belt, even supposing, he acknowledged that’s going to be his final moment. He can’t predict if Stipe Miocic, Francis Ngannou and even Jon Jones could be the fellow at the tip of the mountain if that happens, but he does visualize the moment, and that would encompass preserving the title above his head before laying the gloves down within the center of the cage and bidding the MMA world farewell.
“I’d retire immediately (after a hit the title),” Overeem acknowledged. “There’s nothing to display masks at that point.”