Stefan Struve is unbeaten in Rotterdam. In 2008, Struve submitted Ralf Wonnik via armbar in just 15 seconds. Two fights ago at UFC Fight Night 87, Struve knocked out Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva in just 16 seconds.
On September 2nd, 2017, Struve looks to add yet another spectacular win in front of his countrymen as he faces Alexander Volkov in the main event of UFC Fight Night 115 at Ahoy Rotterdam in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Struve is known as the Skyscraper because at 7 feet, he is the tallest fighter on the UFC’s roster. After losing three of four fights, Struve had a good 2016 where he went 2-0. He was supposed to fight Junior Dos Santos at UFC Fight Night 105 last February but was forced out of the bout because of a shoulder injury.
Alexander Volkov is the current M-1 Global heavyweight champion. The 28-year old Russian is a former Bellator heavyweight tournament winner and heavyweight champion. He is unbeaten in the UFC at 2-0 and he is coming off a unanimous decision win over Roy Nelson at UFC on Fox 24 last April.
Volkov is the slight favorite here at -135 and Struve is the underdog at +105 at Bovada. Not many heavyweights can stand and trade with Struve because of his height and length but in this case, Volkov can hold his own because he is 6-7 with long arms. Having said that, size may not be a factor here even if Struve is still taller. However, the big difference here is Struve’s ability to finish the fight on the ground.
Volkov has been taken down in each of his last fights and if Struve can force him to the ground, he will not only be taken out of his comfort zone but Struve will have the big advantage there. Seventeen of Struve’s 28 wins have come via submission so if he can put Volkov down, he’s got a bag of submission tricks at his disposal.
The problem with Struve is that his chin has always been suspect. Six of his losses are by knockout and Volkov has a 65.28% KO rate with 18 KOs in 28 victories. If Volkov can stay on his feet for most of the fight, he’ll likely get the better of the Skyscraper.
Struve is 7-1 in the Netherlands and 2-0 in Rotterdam. He has always fought well in front of his countrymen and this one should be no different. Volkov is an excellent fighter but Struve is a tried and tested veteran. Of course, the four inch reach and five inch height difference is still there. And yes, Struve’s submission skills should be the key. We’re picking Stefan Struve to pull of the upset by decision or submission.