Even at 40, Ovince Saint Preux to ‘continue to make everybody mad’ like he did at UFC Fight Night 239

LAS VEGAS – Ovince Saint Preux is one of the most senior (both in age and experience) fighters on the UFC roster, but Saturday proved he still has more left in the tank.

On the UFC Fight Night 239 main card, Saint Preux (27-17 MMA, 14-12 UFC) thrilled with a three-round slugfest against Kennedy Nzechukwu (12-5 MMA, 6-5 UFC), whom he defeated by split decision.

The fight as a whole, but particularly the third round, saw the two men stand in the pocket and go blow-for-blow. Saint Preux’s boxing and aggression proved to be the difference, as two of the three judges sided with him.

“Man, to be honest again, I knew he don’t have that one (punch) knockout power,” Saint Preux told MMA Junkie and other reporters at a post-fight news conference. “He was landing shots. I was landing shots. Actually, my trainer’s wife Taylor, the other day, we were doing something. She said, ‘You can do anything for five minutes. If you do it in five minutes, you can do anything in five minutes.’ I was like, ‘All right, cool.’ If you end up being in a phone booth for five minutes, you can do that. I was like, ‘I’m going to make it a fight. I’m not going to go down.’ We stayed in there. I knew he was getting tired of hitting me and I wasn’t going to get tired of hitting him.”

Saint Preux, 40, has been on the promotion’s roster since 2013. Saturday’s fight positioned him at No. 1 atop the promotion’s all-time light heavyweight appearances leaderboard.

So having won two of his most recent three outings, where does OSP go from here?

“(I’ll) continue to make everybody mad,” Saint Preux joked. “I mean, it was a good fight, man. He came out orthodox and I was like, ‘OK.’ We kind of prepared for that but we were expecting to stay southpaw. Then, his jab was kind of landing. I was wondering, ‘Man, why is his jab landing kind of good.’ He went right-handed. Given the fact he went southpaw, with his dominant hand, he was able to pop up out a little bit faster. But once I got the timing down and stuff, I think my head movement did pretty good and I kind of messed up his timing. … I’m trying to fight two more times this year.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 239.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie