Alexander Volkov top 10
Welcome to another episode of Primal MMA. My name is Eric and today we have a special episode for you! Alexander ‘Drago’ Volkov, the towering fighter from Russia is the stuff legends are made of. The talented heavyweight has gone through several ups and downs in his career before finally coming into his own. He is one of the most dangerous fighters but he is also a tender-hearted family man, he delivered the most powerful kicks inside the ring but one day he found himself on the receiving end of it. This and much more will follow in the video where we are going to share top 10 facts about the quirky fighter.
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Fact no. 10
Nicknamed after a villain
Volkov’s nickname ‘Drago’ is inspired by one of the most iconic figures in cinematic history. In part 4 of the legendary Rocky movie, starring action superstar Sylvester Stallone, Drago is portrayed as the Russian invincible boxer whom Rocky Balboa must defeat to avenge his friend. Depiceted as a villain, the part of the 6’6” menacing heavyweight was played by Swedish martial artist and actor Dolph Lundgren. Volkov was awed by the dangerous fictional boxer and adopted his name as a way of paying homage to him. At 6’7” he probably felt he will fit the gigantic boxer’s legacy who has become a pop culture icon.
Fact no. 9
Volkov is primarily a standup striker but he is equally goood in grappling too. His signature fighting style was seen at its best when he folded Walt Harris with brutal body kicks. The first five minutes of the fight were fairly even, with both men finding success on the feet. But, with less than one minute left in the round, “Drago” clipped Harris and had him reeling against the cage. In the next round, Volkov landed a straight right front kick to the body that visibly hurt Harris, forcing him to wince in pain and buckle over in agony. It didn’t take long for “Drago” to jump in and finish the job with several strikes. Since then he is feared for his punishing body kicks.
Volkov utilizes his considerable height, long reach, and powerful kicks to deliver accurate strikes from a distance. He is particularly known for his patient and technical pugilism.
Fact no. 8
Double heavyweight champion
Volkov is a top ranker at UFC which is regarded as the world’s premier mixed martial arts promotion but he is no stranger to high-level MMA competition. He had held heavyweight titles in M-1 Global and Bellator MMA during his time in those organizations. ‘Drago’ has the invaluable experience of handling the pressure that comes with being a top contender or a world champion in a high-level MMA organization. Thus, with many games on the line, he had few losses where he licked his wound, reflected, and sprung back in action with a stronger thirst for victory.
Fact no. 7
He is a marathoner
Volkov is one of the most durable fighters in heavyweight MMA today. He has competed in 42 fights in his professional MMA career thus far. The Russian has amassed a record of 33 wins and 9 losses in his long and challenging road to MMA glory. Out of his eight losses, two came via KO/TKO, two via submission, and five by way of a decision.
The fact that Alexander Volkov has suffered only four stoppage losses overall in such a long MMA career goes to show how much endurance the Russian MMA stalwart truly is. His staying power has enabled him gather a net worth of $750,000
Volkov is well-known for being technically proficient in every aspect of the MMA game – be it grappling, striking, or mixing both aspects.
Fact no 6
‘Drago’ loves his family and is quiet loyal to his wife inspite all the cheergirls drooling over him. He is married to a Russian entrepreneur named Vita. She is the co-founder of Dental Volk Technologies, which designs dental care tools, and Vicare, a cosmetic brand that produces skincare products. Drago met the Moscow born businesswoman in 2013 and soon fell for her. The love birds dated for three years until 2016, when they finally tied the knot. Two years after their marriage, the couple was blessed with a baby boy whose name is not disclosed yet.
Fact no. 5
Justifies the nickname
Its not that Volkov was simply awed by the fictional villain and adopted his name to look cool. The Russian giant actually acts out Drago’s persona in the ring. Some traits between Volkov and on screen Drago are eerily similar.
Volkov's calm and unemotional approach towards his opponents is strikingly similar to that of Drago.In an interview before his fight with Curtis Blaydes, Volkov stated
“He is my next opponent, that’s all…I don’t think about the ranking…You’re either a champion or you’re not; the rest is just numbers and statistics. In any case, it’s not that easy to become one among the Top 10 heavyweights in the world.”
Now isn't this true Drago style!
Fact no 4
The backstory of his back tattoo
Volkov has a huge samurai helmet tattooed on his back. Its theme is the confrontation between life and death. It was first revealed to MMA fans when Volkov faced Walt Harris back at UFC 254. Tattoo artist Maxim Kislitsyn, who inked Volkov’s back was enthusiastic about sharing the process and his hard work in a social media post. He wrote “Worked on the back of professional UFC fighter @volkov_alex. This is an incredibly resilient man. Very tightly tattooed for 2 weeks and the result is 55 hours of work. Thanks for the trust and strength of character💪🏻I wish you success in your fights and never stop!!!”
Fact no. 3
Volkov is a Knockout king
The Heavyweight division is full of scary stories of fighters like Derrick Lewis,Francis Ngannou and Stipe Miocic. But not many people know that the Russian giant has scored more knockout wins than any of these top heavyweights.
He has twenty-two knockout victories to his record, with three submissions and eight decision victories. This is an impressive rate of 53.6% which means he has knocked out one of every two opponents.
Fact no. 2
Touted as the next champion
Presently, Alexander Volkov is being touted as a potential future UFC heavyweight champion. However, with names like Francis Ngannou, Stipe Miocic, Derrick Lewis, and others patrolling the title landscape, it’d be a tall task for the 6’7” Russian fighter to ascend to the heavyweight throne. Especially after the result of his last fight which is coming up in the next point
Fact no. 1
Down but not out
After defeating Alistair Overeem, Volkov was riding a high and met the French mixed martial artist Ciryl Gane at UFC Vegas 30 in a critical heavyweight contender bout. Volkov has always counted on his powerful kicks but this turned out to be the Frenchman’s day of leg power, especially when Volkov had a big bruise on his left leg. Gane used powerful jabs and leg kicks throughout the fight to get better of Volkov who became tentative to come on.
Gane picked up the pace in the third round as Volkov slowed down. Drago showed some comeback in the fourth and fifth rounds but it was a little too. Gane's hand speed, footwork and technical striking were too much for the taller Volkov. He was awarded the decision win.
"I'm feeling really nice," Gane said in his postfight interview. "I'm good. A little dents on my face, but I like that. It's my job."
As for Volkov, he has decided to use this humiliation to learn and grow “I have a lot to grow and work on, but this is the path, and everyone has his own. Thanks to those who are near! I’ll be back as soon as possible!” He said after the loss.>> Watch full video here