UFC Vegas 56 Fight Breakdown: Alexander Volkov vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik


MMAOB staff writer Adam Martin takes a deeper look at the main event of UFC Vegas 56, a five-round heavyweight bout between Alexander Volkov and Jairzinho Rozenstruik. The event takes place on Saturday, June 4 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Alexander Volkov (-155)

Volkov (34-10) is the No. 7 contender in the UFC heavyweight division. The 33-year-old Russian joined the UFC in 2016 and so far he has racked up an 8-4 record in the Octagon. He has beaten the likes of Alistair Overeem, Marcin Tybura, Fabricio Werdum, and Walt Harris, with losses to Tom Aspinall, Ciryl Gane, Derrick Lewis, and Curtis Blaydes. Volkov is a long, rangy striker who prefers to operate from distance and do his damage from the outside. He has strong punching power and he also has some nice kicks as well. He is also a high volume for a heavyweight and he has shown strong cardio throughout his career as he’s gone the full five rounds on numerous occasions. Like any heavyweight, Volkov can be clipped and knocked out. But overall he has had a very good career in the UFC and in Bellator before that, so don’t write him off just yet after the Aspinall loss.

Jairzinho Rozenstruik (+135)

Rozenstruik (12-3) is the No. 8 contender in the UFC heavyweight division. The 34-year-old Suriname native joined the UFC in 2019 and so far he has gone 6-3 in the promotion with all six of his wins coming by decision. He has picked up some nice wins along the way over the likes of Alistair Overeem, Junior dos Santos, and Andrei Arlovski, with losses to Francis Ngannou, Curtis Blaydes, and Ciryl Gane. Rozenstruik is a high-level kickboxer who has huge power in his hands and we’ve seen that time and time throughout his UFC career. However, he is fairly one-dimensional as he is pretty much just a power puncher with the occasional kick. He doesn’t have a threat of a takedown and he’s low volume, too. That being said, he has the power to knock anyone out cold.

Fight Breakdown: I’m curious to see how this heavyweight fight between Volkov and Rozenstruik plays out. In my opinion, there are really only two ways this fight goes. Either Rozenstruik gets the KO, or Volkov wins on points. The thing is, Volkov has shown a pretty good chin throughout his MMA career, and he’s not an easy guy to hit. So I’m not convinced Rozenstruik is just going to go in there and KO him like he’s done to so many other opponents. Volkov’s issue is more with grapplers, and Rozenstruik doesn’t really have any threat of a takedown to worry about. The fight should take place on the feet, and on the feet, Volkov is the longer striker who throws more volume. Volkov averages 4.83 significant strikes per minute, which is much higher than the 2.8 that Rozenstruik lands. I just think Volkov can stay at range and land punches and kicks from a distance and win on the scorecards. Rozenstruik has a puncher’s chance, but my pick is Volkov to win by decision.

Prediction: Alexander Volkov

Written by Adam Martin.


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