Derrick Lewis took his next step toward another heavyweight title shot with a record-setting knockout of Aleksei Oleinik at UFC Vegas 6 (aka UFC on ESPN+ 32) on Saturday night at the Apex in Las Vegas.
Lewis came out firing, landing a few big punches before clinching and pressing Oleinik against the cage. He then powered Oleinik to the ground and unloaded with several hard left hands.
Oleinik tried to clinch form the bottom, but Lewis spun into half guard.
Oleinik again held tight, trying to force a stalemate and a stand-up. He eventually slipped out and regained his footing, immediately taking Lewis to the canvas and landing in side control with a scarf hold.
Lewis scrambled back to top position, but Oleinik easily reversed him and again took side control with a scarf hold.
Lewis remained calm and kept pressing on Oleinik’s face, eventually forcing the Ukrainian fighter to give up on the scarf hold and move to side control, where he applied an Americana lock, but it wasn’t enough to finish the fight before the horn.
The former UFC heavyweight title contender Lewis opened the second round with a jumping knee to the chest and floored Oleinik with a right hand. He then dropped to the canvas, unloading with a brutal onslaught of right hands that put Oleinik in another time zone, forcing referee Herb Dean to call the fight just 21 seconds into the round.
The finish earned Lewis the record, at 11, for most heavyweight knockouts in UFC history. By knocking out Oleinik, Lewis surpassed Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos.
“It feels good. He had that British Bulldog, whatever the hell submission he had on me, I couldn’t breathe at all,” Lewis said after the fight.
Coming into the fight, Lewis marveled at how much better he felt after really focusing on his conditioning. He took things a step further on Saturday, declaring he didn’t want to return to the cage until he could shed a few more pounds.
“I’m not gonna take any more fights until I can get down into that 250, 245 (pound) range,” said Lewis, who weighed 265 pounds for UFC Vegas 6.
“Hopefully (I will return) in December. Some time in December. Right now, that’s all I’m focused on, trying to get my weight down.”
Chris Weidman victorious in return to middleweight
Former middleweight champion Chris Weidman likely staved off the demise of his UFC tenure with a dominant decision victory over Omari Akhmedov in the UFC Vegas 6 co-main event.
Having gone 1-5 in his last six fights, Weidman desperately needed to win this fight, his return to middleweight following a losing effort at light heavyweight.
It wasn’t the most exciting performance of Weidman’s career, but he out-wrestled Akhmedov to get a much need victory after going the full three rounds.
“It was huge,” said Weidman. “(There was) a lot of pressure on (me) and I’m happy to get my hand raised. I’m not too happy with that performance but I needed a win.
“I’m back, All the top tier guys, I’m coming for you.”
UFC Vegas 6: Lewis vs. Oleinik results
Derrick Lewis def. Aleksei Oleinik by TKO (punches) at 0:21, R2
Chris Weidman def. Omari Akhmedov by unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-28)
Darren Stewart def. Maki Pitolo by submission at 3:41, R1
Yana Kunitskaya def. Julija Stoliarenko by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
Beneil Dariush def. Scott Holtzman by TKO (spinning backfist) at 4:38, R1
Tim Means def. Laureano Staropoli by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Kevin Holland def. Joaquin Buckley by TKO (punch) at 0:32, R3
Nasrat Haqparast def. Alex Munoz by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Andrew Sanchez def. Wellington Turman by KO (punch) at 4:14, R1
Gavin Tucker def. Justin Jaynes by submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:43, R3
Youssef Zalal def. Peter Barrett by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27)
Irwin Rivera def. Ali Al Qaisi by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)