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Philipe Lins done ‘hibernating’, vows to stop Ovince Saint Preux at UFC Vegas 69: ‘You can’t stand in front of a bear when he gets up to eat’

UFC Fight Night: Prachnio v Lins
Philipe Lins (left) won one of three so far in the UFC.
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Philipe Lins joined the UFC after becoming the 2018 PFL heavyweight champion, but he has only fought three times inside the octagon since. With nine bouts cancelled or postponed in the past three years, Lins is anxious to finally leave all the “drama” in the rear-view mirror.

Lins returns Saturday to face Ovince Saint Preux at UFC Vegas 69, a match-up that was booked twice before in 2021 and 2022 but has yet to come to fruition. Now, the Brazilian heavyweight feels “way more prepared than when we were going to fight in 2021.”

“Every time someone asks me about those cancelled fights and all those issues, I say I’m changing my nickname from ‘Monstro’ to ‘Drama Fighter,’” Lins said with a laugh on Trocação Franca podcast. “But I’m going back to ‘Monstro’ after this fight with Saint Preux.”

Lins is 1-2 in the UFC, having lost to Andrei Arlovski and Tanner Boser and then rebounding against Marcin Prachnio. He was also booked to face Don’Tale Mayes, Ben Rothwell, Azamat Murzakanov and Maxim Grishin in the past two years.

“It’s frustrating,” Lins said, “But I’m a man that believes in God and I’m always getting a new opportunity. I had drama after drama after my first two UFC fights, fights getting cancelled due to health issues, opponents getting injured, or I getting injured.

“It’s frustrating, but thank God I’m getting a new opportunity to do what I love, which is go there and show work and leave everything in the octagon. I know I let a lot of people down with all these problems, I apologize to them, but sometimes it’s out of our hands.”

Saint Preux recovered from a loss to Boser in his most recent octagon appearance, going 2-0 over Mauricio Rua with a split decision in May 2022. Bouncing back between wins and losses since 2018, OSP is still “a very experienced and dangerous southpaw, who has knocked out a lot of opponents,” Lins said.

“I respect Ovince Saint Preux, but it’s my time now,” he continued. “It’s my moment. I’m a hungry bear. A bear spends a lot of time hibernating, waiting for the right time to wake up and eat. You can’t stand in front of a bear when he gets up to eat. With all due respect to Ovince Saint Preux for everything he’s done for the sport, this is my moment.

“It might be a knockout, a submission, or maybe even a decision. All I know is that I’m leaving everything in there to come out with my second UFC win. Stand and trade with him, take him down, I wanna confuse him and make him miss. I’ll definitely have the opportunity to land a hand. If not, I’ll take him down and go for a submission. It’s high level, we can’t get reckless. I always go for the finish, I always go there to entertain the fans, put on exciting fights and knock out my opponents.”

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