Brazilian finisher Alex Oliveira will attempt to capture the biggest victory of his career when he takes on former UFC welterweight titleholder Carlos Condit tomorrow night (Sat., April 14, 2018) at UFC on FOX 29 from inside Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
Oliveira, who is coming off a Fight of the Night loss to Yancy Medeiros back at UFC 218, is filling in on just 11 days notice for an injured Matt Brown.
With a tremendous opportunity at hand, “Cowboy” is hoping to exit the Octagon this weekend with a huge knockout victory over “Natural Born Killer.” While Condit was finished via TKO by Tyron Woodley back in 2015, that finish was a result of a knee injury. That means Oliveira could become the first fighter ever to truly finish Condit via strikes.
“I need to be careful, because he’ll try to knock me out,” explained Oliveira in a recent interview with Combate. “I can’t make a mistake. He uses his elbows a lot and likes to counter. I won’t give him that opening. I’ll do my thing, use my strategy and go for the kill. My nose is ready to be broken again if I need to. I walk forward all the time. I’ll try to be a little more patient. I’ll knock him out in the second round.”
Oliveira, 30, has been one of the most exciting fighters on the roster since making his UFC debut in 2015. Still, “Cowboy” has a lot of catching up to do if he wants to carve out his own mixed martial arts (MMA) legacy. Defeating a known contender like Condit, who was fighting the likes of Georges St-Pierre and Nick Diaz when Oliveira was starting his professional career in Brazil, will help “Cowboy” reach greater heights in 2018.
“I used to watch his fights and now I’m fighting him,” Oliveira said. “Funny how the world is. I took the fight on short notice, but I was training. I’m a fan of his, he’s a great fighter. That fight is my opportunity. I really respect Condit, but two men will walk into the Octagon and only one can be the winner. I won’t take two defeats in a row. I never accepted that and it isn’t different now. It’s going to be the best fight of the night. He likes to brawl, just like me.”
While Condit has been known to turn into a brawler when the opportunity presents itself, he’s simply more tactical on the feet and on the ground than Oliveira is. We’ll have to wait and see if “Cowboy” can land a significant shot in this fight to draw Condit into a war. If not, it could be a long night for the Brazilian filler.
UFC on FOX 29 will be headlined by a lightweight scrap pitting divisional veteran Dustin Poirier against contagious brawler Justin Gaethje.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC on FOX 29 fight card, starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on FOX at 6 p.m. ET, before the FOX main card start time at 8 p.m. ET.