Two former heavyweight champions headlined UFC Fight Night 127 on Saturday at the O2 Arena in London, England. Former Bellator titleholder Alexander Volkov remained unbeaten inside the octagon by finishing former UFC champion Fabricio Werdum in the fourth round.
Werdum rushed across the cage at the sound of the opening bell and quickly changed levels to put Volkov on his back. He delivered right hands but did little damage. Volkov scrambled to his feet and unleashed a flurry of punches but was taken down by Werdum a second time late in the first frame.
Werdum stuck to his game plan of trying to get the fight to the ground in the second round. The takedowns weren't coming as easy in the second frame. Volkov shook off the first two attempts but was taken down midway through the round. Werdum softened Volkov up with punches and elbows opening up a cut along the Russian's hairline.
The momentum of the bout began to change in the third round. Volkov landed a combination that opened up a laceration under Werdum's right eye. Werdum continued to look for takedowns but was taking damage in his attempts.
The end came in the fourth round. Werdum changed levels and tried to get Volkov to the ground. Volkov gained top position and landed two hard right hands before letting the Brazilian back to his feet. Werdum bit down on his mouth piece, ducked his head and threw a combination. Volkov landed a counter right hand that sent Werdum crashing to the canvas. Volkov followed the former champ to the ground and landed two more punches that rendered Werdum unconscious.
“It was a great win, the biggest win. My opponent Fabricio Werdum is a great guy, a legend of our sport, but I'm coming right now. I'm waiting for the title shot,” said Volkov following the knockout win.
Volkov and Werdum had trained together in the past. Volkov was familiar with Werdum and formulated a successful game plan.
“I knew that his jiu-jitsu is very good. I worked a lot on defense from jiu-jitsu and submissions and just waited for my moment,” he said. “Our plan worked. Defend, defend, defend, and then attack. It worked.”
With four consecutive wins in the UFC and riding a six-fight winning streak, Volkov called for a title shot. He wants to face the winner of champion Stipe Miocic and light heavyweight titleholder Daniel Cormier who fight on July 7 in Las Vegas.
“It doesn't matter who it will be (next). I want the title shot. Maybe Cormier. Maybe Miocic. Who knows? I'm here for the belt,” he said.