clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC Columbus gets heavyweight showdown between Aleksei Oleinik and Ilir Latifi

UFC Fight Night: Oleinik v Spivac Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is finally leaving the Apex facility for their Fight Night events. Well, at least for one event for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

The promotion’s Mar. 26 show will take place in Columbus, Ohio, and currently features a nice 13-fight lineup. Recently added to the mix is a compelling heavyweight matchup between Aleksei Oleinik (59-16-1) and Ilir Latifi (15-8, 1 NC), reports

Both Oleinik and Latifi lost out on recent matchups and now find themselves set to collide with one another. For Oleinik, the 44-year-old “Boa Constrictor” was originally set to face Greg Hardy at UFC 270 on Jan. 22. Unfortunately, he was forced out of the contest due to injury.

Latifi, on the other hand, was to face the unbeaten Alexandr Romanov on Feb. 19 until Romanov pulled out.

An incredibly seasoned veteran, Russia’s Oleinik looks to snap what is currently the longest losing streak of his lengthy career after dropping three straight. His last win came at UFC 249 in May 2020 when he took on fellow submission wizard, Fabricio Werdum. Oleinik managed to earn a split decision over the former UFC titleholder.

Sweden’s Latifi, 38, recently found himself on a three-fight skid as well. However, he returned to the win column his last time out when besting Canada’s Tanner Boser by split decision at UFC Vegas 28 in June 2021. This Oleinik matchup will act as Latifi’s third at heavyweight in the UFC.

UFC Columbus has yet to have a new main event announced after the headliner between former light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz and Aleksandar Rakic fell through due to a Blachowicz injury.

The current lineup of fights on the card can be seen below.

  • 125lbs.: Askar Askarov vs. Kai Kara-France
  • 170lbs.: Neil Magny vs. Max Griffin
  • 115lbs.: Michelle Waterson vs. Amanda Ribas
  • 135lbs.: Sara McMann vs. Karol Rosa
  • 207-265lbs.: Aleksei Oleinik vs. Ilir Latifi
  • 170lbs: Matt Brown vs. Bryan Barberena
  • 125lbs.: Joanne Wood vs. Alexa Grasso
  • 145lbs.: Tucker Lutz vs. Seung Woo Choi
  • 135lbs.: Montel Jackson vs. Danaa Batgerel
  • 125lbs.: David Dvorak vs. Matheus Nicolau
  • 185lbs.: Aliaskhab Khizriev vs. Abusupiyan Magomedov
  • 145lbs.: Nate Landwehr vs. Lerone Murphy
  • 155lbs.: Marc Diakese vs. Viascheslav Borschev
  • 145lbs.: Luis Saldana vs. Bruno Souza

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Mania Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Mania