Tomorrow in the headliner of the UFC‘s first ever event in France, we will see a clash of top heavyweights. Paris’ own and former interim heavyweight champion Ciryl Gane (10-1) returns after suffering his first pro loss to take on the entertaining Tai Tuivasa (15-3).
As mentioned, Gane is coming off his first pro loss. Back in January, he fought Francis Ngannou for the undisputed heavyweight title. He won the first two rounds with his ability to control distance and throw his range strikes. However, Ngannou shocked everyone going to his wrestling in the final three rounds.
Ultimately, Gane lost a decision after losing those final three rounds. He had made his UFC debut at 3-0 so the loss snapped a seven-fight winning streak which started his career inside the octagon.
Standing across from him tomorrow is Tai Tuivasa. Tuivasa admittedly is someone who really didn’t take his career all too seriously at one point. At one point, he was 10-0 and he was scheduled to fight former UFC champion Junior Dos Santos.
He lost that fight and then lost three in a row. It looked like he was going to get cut by the promotion. However, he rededicated himself to his career and has now won five fights in a row. Most recently, he knocked out Derrick Lewis at UFC 271.
UFC Paris Prediction
While both men in tomorrow’s headliner are known as strikers, they are vastly different. Ciryl Gane is someone who moves like a middleweight. Lots of footwork and despite his massive size, he usually throws a lot more jabs and feeler shots than anything else.
Rarely do you see him uncork with a ton of power. Meanwhile Tai Tuivasa is all power all the time. He’s going to try to make UFC Paris a brawl and that’s really his only shot. His only shot is to make things a brawl to the point where he can catch Gane with something big.
However, I don’t see that happening. I see Tuivasa getting frustrated by the distance control and range striking of Ciryl Gane. I also think Gane’s defense is too good to get clipped by Tuivasa. I think the most logical outcome for tomorrow is a Ciryl Gane decision.
However, I would rule out a finish. If Tuivasa gasses out and Gane keeps the pressure up, he could finish him in the later rounds.
Prediction: Ciryl Gane by Decision