Gane defeated Tuivasa via a third-round knockout at the inaugural UFC event in Paris on Saturday night. It was a back-and-forth affair between the two brawlers until Gane blitzed Tuivasa with a series of strikes in Round 3.
Gane’s victory resulted in the Paris crowd erupting in cheers as France’s first-ever UFC event came to a close. It ended with one of the best French MMA fighters putting on a showcase after losing to Ngannou at UFC 270.
Gane cemented himself as a massive part of the UFC heavyweight title picture. While Ngannou acknowledged the magnitude of Gane’s victory, it wasn’t enough to make him drop his jaw in reaction.
Francis Ngannou Gives Ciryl Gane Credit But Wasn’t Impressed By UFC Paris Win
During an interview on ESPN’s UFC Paris post-fight show, Ngannou was asked if he was impressed or taken aback by how Gane fought in the Octagon.
“Well, I know he’s a great fighter,” Ngannou said of Gane. “It’s hard to respond to that question for a guy that I beat if I’m impressed with him. I mean he’s here for a reason. I fought him for a reason, because he’s the No. 1 contender. Yes, he’s good, but I’m the champ. So really hard to be impressed. Great performance.” (h/t MMA Fighting)
Ngannou defeated Gane via a unanimous decision at UFC 270 back in January. The former teammates became adversaries following Ngannou’s split from MMA Factory Paris after a strained relationship with then-coach Fernand Lopez.
Ngannou remains sidelined after undergoing knee surgery earlier this year, and a rematch with Gane remains a possibility soon. As Ngannou eyes a potential fight with Jon Jones, Gane may need to win one more fight to do enough to impress the UFC heavyweight king.
What are your thoughts on Francis Ngannou’s evaluation of Ciryl Gane’s win?