UFC London 2022: Paul Craig reckons he has the edge over Volkan Oezdemir in two key areas

  • Tom Ward

Scottish UFC star Paul Craig reckons he is better than Volkan Oezdemir in every facet of MMA – except perhaps the striking department.

That’s why he has no intention of keeping the fight standing whatsoever.

The UFC returns to London with Tom Aspinall and Curtis Blaydes to face off in the main event.

Elsewhere, Craig, 34, will take on Oezdemir, 30, in an intriguing clash of styles.

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Craig is ranked No8 in the UFC light heavyweight rankings and will be hoping to secure a big victory over his Swiss opponent.

Former UFC title challenger Oezdemir is a wily contender and will provide a stern test for the Scotsman.

However, Craig says he doesn’t see it that way, as he insists he is a more well-rounded mixed martial artist.

Paul Craig will fight at UFC London
Paul Craig will fight at UFC London

“Everybody in the top ten is going to have amazing grappling,” Craig told reporters.

“There’s nobody in the top ten that’s going to have no jiu-jitsu in there. I find it unbelievable if you manage to get to the top ten of any division without a basic understanding of jiu-jitsu.

“He’s got a very, very good defence for his double leg, I know that, but I believe my wrestling is slightly better than his.

“The way I look at it, I remember playing this game with my kids, it’s called Top Trumps.

“Is my striking as good as Oezdemir’s? Nah, he’s potentially going to win that, right? He’s probably like a ten, I’m probably like a three, so I’m not going to use that card.

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“I believe my jiu-jitsu is better than his, I’m probably like a ten, he’s like a three, and then it’s the same for my wrestling.

“I believe my wrestling is higher than his calibre of wrestling. I know he’s been training at AllStars, he’s training with Alistair Overeem, he’s training with all these guys. His training partners will not have my style of jiu-jitsu.

“It’s very hard to mimic it, it’s very hard to get somebody like me, who’s built like a swimmer and has the attributes that I have

“For somebody to copy how Oezdemir fights, it’s so much easier. Walk forward, swing lefts, swing rights, try to knock me out. That’s easy to mimic.

“Not a lot of people can do what I can do.”

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