Tom Aspinall vs. Sergey Spivak – UFC Vegas 36 Preview

Tom Aspinall
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 20: Tom Aspinall of England reacts after his submission victory over Andrei Arlovski of Belarus in a heavyweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on February 20, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Tom Aspinall will be taking on Moldova’s Sergey Spivak in the co-main event of UFC Vegas 36. This event will be held in the UFC Apex on Saturday 4th September and is headlined by an exciting and important fight in the middleweight division between Darren Till and Derek Brunson. The night of fights will also feature a number of Britain’s best talents scattered across the card, Next Generation Gym’s Molly McCann, the undefeated Welshman Jack Shore, and lastly, who can forget the much anticipated lightweight debut of Liverpool’s own, former Cage Warriors featherweight champion, Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett.

Tom Aspinall vs. Sergey Spivak – UFC Vegas 36 Preview

Tom Aspinall (10 – 2 – 0)

Tom Aspinall is currently riding an impressive three-fight win streak in the UFC heavyweight division, with his last and most dominant win coming by way of submission against former champion Andrei Arlovski in the second round of their fight in February 2021. Now, he prepares for a fight that looked to be in jeopardy with the previous opponent being unable to make the fight, and in his place, Sergey Spivak steps up.

The Team Kaobon heavyweight who hails from Wigan has demonstrated his abilities in both the striking and grappling departments in all his UFC fights so far. He moves like a middleweight and utilizes’ s his fight IQ to find openings and has shown to gets the finish comfortably. Expect Aspinall to be fairly confident coming into this fight, on the back of a win against a former champion, a lot of hype fuelled by a British takeover in Las Vegas, and a possible win setting up his big introduction to the top ten of the heavyweight rankings, life has never looked sweeter for the hard-hitting Brit.

Sergey Spivak (13 – 2 – 0)

Moldovian, Sergey Spivak has proven that resilience is key when facing adversity in the sport. Following his loss to Poland’s Marcin Tybura in February 2020, Spivak has also built a three-fight win streak in the division, notably in his last UFC outing against Russian submission specialist and MMA veteran, Alexei Oleinik, which he won by a controlled decision win. Although his performance failed to provide the highlight reel-Esque knockout’s which heavyweight fans have grown accustomed to, his game plan was smart, strategic and ensured that a fighter like Oleinik, who has shown the ability on numerous occasions to submit opponents from any angle was left unable to present any significant dangers throughout their fight, and ultimately lost by decision.

A win for Spivak will raise his stock against a popular and rising contender from the UK in Aspinall who has looked dangerous and tipped to be a future UFC heavyweight champion, as former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping stated.

The Fight

Both fighters will bring a combination of speed and power to the cage and the result will ultimately come down to who can execute their game-plan more effectively on fight night. As we’ve grown familiar with, Aspinall has the speed and IQ to create opportunities that most heavyweights cannot, his 6ft5 stature moves like a middleweight, he can set up speedy power shots that are known to finish opponents, but should he get to the ground, a submission as we witnessed in the Arlovski fight is also a legitimate threat for any opponent.

For Spivak, whilst no stranger to finishing fights with his stand-up, the aim here will be to capitalize on any errors at the hands of Aspinall, as we’ve understood in his game, with six submission wins on his record, Spivak is no stranger to smothering and overwhelming his opponents with wrestling and ground control which if done successfully could dictate the pace and ultimately secure him the win against #13 ranked Tom Aspinall. If this is not executed early on, Aspinall’s reputation to finishing the fight at his own leisure is a likely outcome here.

PREDICTION: TOM ASPINALL 2ND RD TKO

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