Unbeaten Ciryl Gane is open to the idea of fighting Derrick Lewis next.
Since signing with the UFC in 2019, the 30-year-old Gane has put together five-straight victories, with three of them coming by way of stoppage. Most recently, he scored a clear unanimous decision victory over Jairzinho Rozenstruik in the main event of UFC Fight Night 186 last month.
Despite his win over Rozenstruik being one-sided, Gane was criticized in the aftermath of the bout, as many felt as if he showed a lack of urgency in terms of going for a finish. However, in a potential bout against “The Black Beast”, the French fighter claims that he’ll be looking to end things early.
“If the fight (Lewis) is going to be OK for the contract, I think I’d like to finish the fight before the end,” Gane told MMAJunkie’s Farah Hannoun. “Of course, because I know it’s good to finish the fight, but it’s better to finish the fight before the end. So if I can, I’m gonna do it.”
Lewis, one of the heavyweight division’s most prolific knockout artists, has won four-straight bouts and is coming off back-to-back knockout victories over Aleksei Oleinik and Curtis Blaydes. His knockout over Blaydes, which was particularly brutal, took place one week before Gane’s victory Rozenstruik, which is what led to the 36-year-old American’s initial callout of Gane.
Given the current state of the division, it’s a bout that makes sense, although Lewis would undoubtedly represent the toughest test of “Bon Gamin’s” relatively young fighting career. And it’s safe to say that Gane is well aware of the danger that Lewis brings into the octagon each time out.
“You see the fight between Curtis and Derrick one week before? Blaydes, if he didn’t (shoot) too much with the wrestling, probably he would win the fight,” Gane said. “But he did just one mistake to go in front of Derrick Lewis, and he did just one uppercut, and he finished the fight. For me, the people say, ‘Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go!’ but I don’t want to do the same game like Curtis Blaydes. It’s a little bit of a shame.”
“He doesn’t have a lot of skills, but this guy is f*cking dangerous. With one punch, just one punch, he can finish the game, and he’s No. 2 in the rankings just with one punch. So yes, this guy is really dangerous.”
With heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic set to defend his title against Francis Ngannou this Saturday at UFC 260, and former light heavyweight king Jon Jones waiting in the wings for the next title shot, now is likely the perfect time for the UFC to match up Lewis and Gane, and if Ciryl Gane has it his way, the two will do battle this summer.
“So not now, maybe in three months, so maybe in June or July,” Gane said.
Long Island-based sports writer covering MMA, Boxing, and the New York Jets.