The Swedish legend laid down the Belarusian Janitor with one blow. Nice warm up before Jones

Evgeny Narizhny

Evgeny Narizhny

How Gustafsson knocked out Matyushenko

It is a pity that the 40-year-old Matyushenko did not retire on time.

On the evening of July 23 in London, England, the second in 2022 British UFC Fight Night tournament will take place. In the main fight of the event, heavyweights Curtis Blades and Tom Aspinall will meet, in the main card Alexander Gustafsson will return with a duel against Nikita Krylov.

Today, the Swedish light heavyweight is not the same as before. Gustafsson is on a three-time loss streak in the UFC against Fabricio Werdum, Anthony Smith and Jon Jones. The tormentor rarely fights and will probably soon finally announce his retirement. But this does not mean that his path to the UFC went unnoticed.

Alexander Gustafsson

Alexander Gustafsson

Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

In addition to the legendary first fight with Jones, the Swede has a lot of great fights on his account, most of which ended ahead of schedule. In 2010 and 2011, Alexander scored four finishes in a row – the last fight in the series happened against Belarusian Vladimir Matyushenko. At the time of the fight with Gustafsson, Matyushenko was 40 years old – by such a venerable age he had 11 fights in the UFC and managed to lose to Jon Jones, whom the Swede would meet a year and a half after the fight against Matyushenko.

The Belarusian was nicknamed Janitor or Cleaner, which was given to him by American fighter Dave Schultz after Matyushenko defeated members of the US Greco-Roman wrestling team at a tournament in Siberia. Vladimir even defeated the Olympic champion Kevin Jackson, although before that the Americans mistook him for a mat cleaner – he was so poorly dressed.

Matyushenko failed to surprise Gustafsson. At the beginning of the third minute, the Belarusian went on the attack, opened up and missed the counterpunch. Gustafsson’s jab hit Vladimir exactly in the chin – the fighter collapsed on the canvas, and after several finishing moves, the referee stopped the fight.

The rights to the video belong to the UFC. Watch the video on the UFC YouTube channel.

At the UFC tournament in London, Alexander will fight with another Russian-speaking fighter, Nikita Krylov. The Swede is considered an underdog before the fight, and it is very likely that in case of defeat he will take off his gloves and fold them in the center of the octagon.

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