Former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum will aim to win his third-straight bout when he takes on former Bellator MMA heavyweight champion Alexander Volkov tomorrow evening (Sat., Mar. 17, 2018) at UFC Fight Night 127 live on Fight Pass from inside O2 Arena in London, England.
The main event tilt will mark Werdum’s third fight in the past five months. After losing his divisional title to Stipe Miocic via knockout at UFC 198, and then losing a close decision to Alistair Overeem at UFC 213, the Brazilian veteran has been trying to make up for lost time and quickly work his way back into position for another shot at UFC gold.
“I can’t think of the belt only, nor can I sit around and not fight, waiting for the belt to come to me,” Werdum told MMAjunkie earlier this week. “I have to demonstrate my worth by fighting as often as possible. I’m confident I’ll have another shot.”
Luckily, Werdum’s quick turnarounds and willingness to fight lesser known opponents hasn’t backfired. Instead, the 40-year-old contender got right back into the win column after his loss to Overeem by submitting Walt Harris in 65 seconds at UFC 216 and then battering rising contender Marcin Tybura via decision back at UFC Fight Night 121.
If Werdum is able to get past Volkov this weekend in London he’ll take one step closer to another heavyweight title shot. Whether that shot comes against Miocic or current light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, who are scheduled to collide in a superfight at UFC 226 this July, Werdum really doesn’t care.
“My greatest objective is being the champion for a third time,” said Werdum. “It doesn’t matter if it’s against Stipe Miocic or Daniel Cormier. I love Daniel Cormier. He’s my friend going back several years. But we’re professionals. If he wins, I’ll have to fight him. What can I do? My goal is the belt. That’s it. It doesn’t matter who’s holding it.
“If it’s Stipe Miocic, great – I get to avenge a loss. If it’s Daniel Cormier, we’ll fight. I have nothing bad to say about him. I don’t badmouth people to promote a fight. That’s not who I am. … My goal is the belt, regardless of who has it.”
Of course, Werdum can’t possibly overlook Volkov heading into tomorrow’s UFC Fight Night 127 main event. Volkov has won his last five professional bouts (3-0 UFC), has only been finished once since 2010, and possesses one of the more dangerous striking arsenals at the heavyweight level.
“I see Volkov as a very difficult opponent,” Werdum said. “He’s very tall. He has a great reach, and very good muay Thai. He just beat three guys in the UFC. And every heavyweight in the UFC is dangerous. I think it will be a great fight. I’m able to visualize it. I envision a lot of muay Thai. And like everyone says, I expect to knock him out or submit him. (But) the main thing is to get the win.”
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 127 fight card, starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 1:45 p.m. ET, followed by the main card start time of 5 p.m. ET, also on Fight Pass.