Off the back of his UFC Vegas 30 victory over the #5 ranked, Alexander Volkov on Saturday night — the #3 rated heavyweight contender, Ciryl Gane certainly appears to have no qualms about possibly sharing the Octagon with former MMA Factor teammate, Francis Ngannou for the heavyweight championship in the future.
Turning in his sixth promotional victory, La Roche sur-Yon native, Gane managed to extend his undefeated professional record to nine fights in the process, via a calculated unanimous decision victory over former Bellator and M-1 Global heavyweight gold holder, Volkov over the course of five rather straightforward rounds.
The win came as Gane’s second consecutively as a headliner, following a February UFC Vegas 20 clash against Suriname striker, Jairzinho Rozenstruik — where he similarly managed to outpoint the American Top Team staple on that occasion on route to a unanimous decision triumph.
In the midst of a nine-fight rise, Gane, who once shared the mats with current heavyweight pacesetter, Ngannou during their respective times with Fernand Lopez at the MMA Factory in Paris, is on the cusp of a title challenge in the not-too-distant future, and maintains he’s “very comfortable” with the idea of meeting with ex-training partner, Ngannou in a title fight.
“I’m comfortable about this matchup (with Ngannou) if this matchup is going to happen,” Gane said. “It was a shame before the title. Now, for the title, I’m really comfortable with this situation, because we’re not in the same gym. If we’re going to fight for the belt, this is beautiful for me, for him, for my coach (Fernand Lopez), and the MMA Factory.“
Ngannou, who currently plys his trade with head coach, Erik Nicksick at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas, Nevada as well as the UFC’s Performance Institute in ‘Sin City’ — is likely to draw the #2 ranked, Derrick Lewis in his first attempted title defence.
The rematch between Ngannou and Lewis is currently targeted for a September pay-per-view event, likely UFC 266 — after reports emerged recently that the initially slated headliner between Jan Blachowicz and Glover Teixeira had been moved to UFC 257 on October 30th in an expected return to ‘Fight Island’ for the first time since January of this year.
Ngannou vs. Lewis II was linked to a billed August 7th UFC 265 event, however, scheduling conflicts prevented that pairing from landing at the event, with the pay-per-view showcase of the two now likely for a September 25th UFC 266 flagship event.