Aleksei Oleinik has a perfect nickname for himself in “The Boa Constrictor.”
Of his 56 career victories inside the cage, 46 have come via submission. He’ll try to make it 57 and 47 this Saturday when he meets Mark Hunt in the main even to UFC Fight Night 136 live on UFC Fight Pass from Moscow, Russia.
For the 41-year-old who was born in the Soviet Union and is now part of Ukraine, becoming a submission expert just came naturally.
“I think it’s something inside of me,” he said. “When I started MMA, there were hundreds of techniques and styles. Grappling and submissions were the styles that worked the best for me and what I liked the most. So that’s who I am now.”
All three of his most recent Octagon wins have com via submission, including a pair of Ezekiel chokes on Junior Albini and Viktor Pesta. He also locked in a rear-naked choke on Travis Browne and is 5-2 since signing with the UFC.
“The goal is to fight the hardest fights I can fight,” he said. “Mark Hunt is one of the hardest fights. That’s the way I want to do it and that’s how I’ve always done it.
“I’m not afraid to stand with Mark Hunt. But I don’t see myself finishing him standing up. I’m confident and I’m preparing. I also have some tricks for Mark Hunt and I’m hoping one of those tricks will work.”
Of Oleinik’s 68 career bouts, only eight have gone the distance in his career.
UFC Fight Night 136 Card
MAIN CARD (UFC Fight Pass/2 p.m. ET)
Heavyweight: Mark Hunt vs. Aleksei Oleinik
Light Heavyweight: Nikita Krylov vs. Jan Blachowicz
Heavyweight: Andrei Arlovski vs. Shamil Abdurakhimov
Welterweight: Thiago Alves vs. Alexey Kunchenko
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass/10:30 a.m. ET)
Middleweight: Khalid Murtazaliev vs. CB Dollaway
Bantamweight: Petr Yan vs. Jin Soo Son
Lightweight: Rustam Khabilov vs. Kajan Johnson
Lightweight: Desmond Green vs. Mairbek Taisumov
Light Heavyweight: Magomed Ankalaev vs. Marcin Prachino
Middleweight: Jordan Johnson vs. Adam Yandiev
Welterweight: Ramazan Emeev vs. Stefan Sekulic
Bantamweight: Merab Dvalishvili vs. Terrion Ware