The UFC’s dedication to building a real heavyweight division seems to be continuing in force. There was a time when getting new talent over 205-lbs was more of a pipe dream than anything. Now, with the division cresting over 40 fighters and half of them having fewer than three fights, we’re in the middle of a big, beefy renaissance. The latest addition to this re-birth of the big dude is Dmitriy Sosnovskiy. His signing was announced by Russian-MMA writer Alexey Safonov on Twitter. There’s no word yet on his debut date or first opponent but…
Who is Dmitry Sosnovskiy?
The 26-year-old “Wicked Machine” is a Ukranian-born Russian MMA fighter training out of Moscow. It appears these days he’s working heavily with Oleksiy Oliynyk at Oliynyk’s MMA school, alongside Shamil Nurmagomedov and a growing stable of regional fighters. Sosnovskiy will enter the UFC with an undefeated 9-0 record, having only been out of the first round twice. Upon further examination, that’s not really meaningful, considering that the OPLOT circuit Sosnovskiy spent much of his career on was mostly a can crushing league. His 2014 stoppage win over Aleksander Emelianenko stands out as his best to date, and it’s not terrible. But it is 2014 Aleksander Emelianenko, his last pro fight before getting locked up following a series of troubling and eventually horrific incidents. It’d be fair to say, to date, that Sosnovskiy is relatively untested against good competition.
It’s also worth noting that, back in 2014 (fresh of the Emelianenko win), Sosnovskiy was primed to debut in Bellator, when his opponent, Manny Lara, pulled out of the bout due to illness. Sosnovskiy never made his debut for the promotion and has yet to compete outside of Russia & Ukraine.
What you should expect:
I’m not sure what Sosnovskiy’s non-MMA sporting background is, but in the cage he’s a dedicated wrestle-grappler. He reminds me a bit of Viktor Pesta in that, while he’s not much of a range striker, his composure and athletic aggression completely changes once he’s able to reach the clinch. If he can get hands on someone, he’s a brutally powerful fighter with decent dirty boxing and a strong power takedown and top control GnP game. The big question in the UFC will be how effective his bodylock/trip takedown game is, as that appears to be his first choice and relies a lot on him being the bigger, stronger fighter, which won’t be as true in the UFC as it was on the regional circuit.
To get us better acquainted, here’s his most recent fight against Oleg Gapchenko:
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