Ovince St. Preux squares off against “Big Ben” Rothwell in OSP’s heavyweight debut as UFC action returns May 13. Before you put your money down, have a look at how these two stack up thanks to OddsUSA and DraftKings.
OSP is looking to get back in the win column after submitting Michal Oleksiejczuk last September, his first win since June 2018. As DraftKings notes, “whilst possessing highlight-reel submissions and knockouts, Saint Preux has struggled for consistency in the light heavyweight division, peaking with an interim title loss to Jon Jones.”
It will be interesting to see if the move to heavyweight adds to OSP’s power or slows him down. At any rate, we expect his cardio or “ring shape” to steal a boxing term, to be better than Rothwell’s. Rothwell did get a victory in his last bout, albeit a controversial finish of Stephen Struve after multiple illegal groin strikes.
Before that, Rothwell had taken 3 Ls and been on the sidelines for two years thanks to a failed drug test. DraftKings points out Ben Rothwell has won three of his last four UFC fights as an underdog (Rothwell odds to win: +115). Also, when fighting orthodox opponents, OSP’s last five fights haven’t made it to the final horn (Fight to go the Distance Odds: No: -190).
Why DraftKings Might be Wrong and OSP vs. Big Ben Odds to Go the Distance
We have to respectfully disagree with DraftKings as this fight should be expected to go the distance. Unless the move to heavyweight does make OSP more of a striking threat, we still think Rothwell’s chin should hold up even at age 38.
Rothwell’s only been put away due to strikes on four occasions in a nearly 20-year pro career. Beyond that, he has only lost by submission twice, making another Von Flue/ OSP choke unlikely. OSP does seem like he has more weapons in his arsenal and is more likely to use a stick and move approach where Rothwell could just throw bombs.
The UFC’s E. Spenser Kyte writes, “Both men have unconventional approaches on the feet and quality grappling skills, so it should come down to whether “OSP” can use his speed and quickness to keep Rothwell at range and off balance or whether “Big Ben” will control things with his size and strength.”
Never rule out a finish from either of these men, but this one should go to the scorecards
Prediction: Ovince St. Preux def. Ben Rothwell via unanimous decision