Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight scrappers Tanner Boser and Ovince Saint Preux will battle this weekend (Sat., June 26, 2021) at UFC Vegas 30 inside UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.
For the second time in June, Boser will walk to the Octagon, though this time he’ll be looking to cleanse the taste of a bad decision from his mouth. As a result of the split-decision loss to Ilir Latifi, Boser has technically lost two in a row, which definitely adds some pressure to this co-main event slot. Meanwhile, “OSP” is a hard man to read. Just when it seems like Saint Preux is on a major downward slide, he stops a quality prospect. Then, before anyone can really regain hope for a turnaround, he’ll look particularly flat or miss weight. At any rate, Saint Preux is back at Heavyweight, still looking for his first win in that division.
Let’s take a closer look at the keys to victory for each man:
Key Wins: Philipe Lines (UFC Vegas 4), Raphael Pessoa (UFC on ESPN 14), Daniel Spitz (UFC on ESPN 6)
Key Losses: Andrei Arlovski (UFC Vegas 13), Ciryl Gane (UFC Fight Night 165)
Keys to Victory: Boser is definitely different from the average Heavyweight up-and-comer. The Canadian big man definitely does have some power in his hands, but he doesn’t rely it on, instead opting for movement, feints, and activity to carry him to victory.
Against “OSP,” activity is really the most important of those traits. Saint Preux has never been a particularly high-volume kickboxer, but that appears to be even more the case at Heavyweight, where he’s carrying additional mass. The more strenuous a pace Boser manages to push, the quicker Saint Preux is likely to fade.
In addition, Boser should look to capitalize when Saint Preux is near the fence. Over the last few years, “OSP” has taken some serious shots when unable to disengage along the cage, and Boser has the overhand to make him pay. If Boser is too far back to land that shot, his front kick could be another great option to further attack the Southpaw’s gas tank.
Ovince Saint Preux
Key Wins: Mauricio Rua (UFC Fight Night 56), Corey Anderson (UFC 217), Tyson Pedro (UFC Fight Night 132), Michal Oleksiejczuk (UFC Fight Night 160), Patrick Cummins (UFC on FOX 15), Alonzo Menifield (UFC Vegas 9)
Key Losses: Jon Jones (UFC 197), Ilir Latifi (UFC on FOX 28), Nikita Krylov (UFC 236), Jimi Manuwa (UFC 204), Volkan Oezdemir (UFC Fight Night 104), Glover Teixeira (UFC Fight Night 73), Jamahal Hill (UFC Vegas 16)
Keys to Victory: Truly, there may never be another like “OSP.” An incredible athlete with a very odd set of skills, Saint Preux is at his best when crushing opponents with his powerful kicks or somehow wrangling yet another funky submission.
In this match, it really feels like “OSP” needs to take the offensive. As of late, Saint Preux has been getting backed to the cage far too often — the man has major knockout power and physical strength, it should be difficult to bully him around! Boser is not much of a pressure fighter anyway, so it’s really up to Saint Preux whether or not he fights along the outside or advances on his target.
Backing Boser is up is a smart move. It will be far easier for Saint Preux to fire off his kicks if he’s the one advancing, and those kicks can really help eliminate a great deal of Boser’s counter punching. It doesn’t matter if the Canadian is remaining evasive from punches, provided Saint Preux’s shin is slamming into his torso often.
Hard kicks are the best way to slow a mobile opponent. If Sant Preux can then corner his prey and start lining up that left hand, perhaps we’re in for a vintage “OSP” knockout.
I cannot pretend this is a particularly important fight.
It definitely matters for Boser, who is looking to return to the win column after a pair of close decision losses. Score the fights how you’d like, Boser could still get cut with another loss! That would certainly be a shame, as he’s a talented Heavyweight, but he’s not the most trustworthy action fighter, so it would not be a complete shock.
Victory buys job security for “The Bulldozer.”
As for Saint Preux, he’s been around forever, and his days as a potential contender are done. At this point, “OSP” is here to fight prospects and fellow veterans. As one of the more consistent big men on the roster in terms of fight activity, Saint Preux serves a valuable role unlikely to change regardless of this bout’s outcome.
In the big picture, the bout doesn’t matter much, so ... let’s just hope it’s fun!
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 30 fight card right here, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance on ESPN+ at 4 p.m. ET.
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At UFC Vegas 30, Tanner Boser and Ovince Saint Preux will square off in the co-main event. Which man will earn the victory?