andrei-arlovskiIt was announced Thursday, former UFC Heavyweight champ Andrei “The Pit Bull” Arlovski had resigned with the UFC. Now it has been made official that “The Pit Bull’s” first fight back will be against No. 14 ranked Heavyweight Brendan Schaub at UFC 174 on June 14.

UFC 174 will be held at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Colubmia and is headlined with a Flyweight title bout between champion Demetrious Johnson and challenger Ali Bagautinov.

Arlovski (21-10, 1 NC) has won six of his last eight fights and is coming off a second round TKO win over Andreas Krankiotakes in Russia this past November. Just prior to that he had won a unanimous decision over Mike Kyle at WSOF 5.

The 35-year-old Belarusian previously fought for the UFC from 2000-2008 and went 10-4 inside the Octagon. Arlovski won the UFC interim Heavyweight championship with a 47-second submission win over Tim Sylvia at UFC 51 in 2005. He returned at UFC 53, defeating Justin Eilers via first round TKO and was later promoted from interim champ to official UFC Heavyweight champ.

Schaub (10-3) has gone 6-3 during his UFC tenure and is coming off a first round submission win over Matt Mitrione at UFC 165 in Sept. 2013. The TUF 10 finalist also holds UFC victories over the likes of  Gabriel Gonzaga, Mirko Cro Cop and Lavar Johnson.

Schaub was expected to face the heavy-handed Mark Hunt next, but the bout never materialized. However, Schaub has trained with Arlovski before, knows what he’s up against and feels it is a huge opportunity.

Schaub via Fox Sports:

“So I shot for the stars and I landed on the moon with Andrei Arlovski. He’s a bigger name than Mark Hunt. He’s a legend. It’s like them calling up and saying you’re pitching against Bo Jackson, he’s one of the greats. … You look at the name Arlovski’s beat — Fabricio Werdum, Ben Rothwell, Roy Nelson — you’re talking about the who’s who of the sport. A big convincing win, a knockout of Andrei Arlovski, that launches me up there. It couldn’t get bigger for me. My coach asked ‘well what should we do with this fight?’ and I said line up the toughest sons of b–ches you can find because this isn’t going to be one of those quick knockouts.”

Personally, I’m happy to see Arlovski back in the UFC. He has a huge fan base and has made the necessary changes in his training camp to get back on the winning side of things. He had a stretch there from 2009-2011 where he lost four in a row, and three by knockout, where people were calling for his retirement, even one of his coaches. But he hooked up with Jackson’s MMA and has turned things around.

Arlovski has only lost one fight since he’s made the switch in camps and that was a decision to Anthony Johnson in WSOF last year. He’s an athletic heavyweight and should be able to hang with some of the UFC’s current crop of heavyweights. Now if he goes in there and gets flattened by Schaub, that’s not going to be good for his longevity, but we’ll see.


Leave a Reply