Not only did Alistair Overeem have to deal with the jaw dropping reach of Stefan Struve at UFC on FOX 13, but the heavyweight had huge, ‘must win’ pressure riding on his back.
Despite all those obstacles, Overeem went out and scored a really, impressive win, as he took Struve to the mat and bombed him out in the first round. It should also be noted, however, that Struve was fighting for the first time in well over a year.
After the victory, which evened Overeem’s UFC record at 3-3, he had this to say about his performance and his immediate future (quote via MMA Junkie.com):
“Tonight went very well, I’m going to rest up, and I’m going to sit down with my coaches,” Overeem said. “I’m not going to take too long off, but I am going to take some time off.”
The Dutch fighter has had a busy few months, as following his stoppage loss to Ben Rothwell in September, he jumped on the opportunity to fight Struve on Saturday. In February, Overeem worked his way to a clear cut win over Frank Mir, who has also been struggling. It was the former champ’s fourth straight defeat.
Overeem was eager to fight so soon, because of the setbacks he’s incurred since arriving in the UFC, which includes KO losses to Travis Browne and “Bigfoot” Silva. In addition, following the loss to Rothwell, the 34 year-old insisted he was well prepared for the bout, and repeatedly sung the praises of his new coaches at Jackson’s MMA.
“We had a couple slip-ups, I guess,” Overeem noted. “A lot has happened. My life has been in high gear for the last six years. A lot has happened – a lot of good and a lot of bad – but here we are tonight with a very nice victory.”
So, now we’ll wait to see who the UFC wants Overeem to fight next. How about Mark Hunt? Sounds pretty good no?
UFC on FOX 13 went down at the U.S. Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona.