An interim UFC heavyweight championship fight between the #2 ranked contender, Derrick ‘The Black Beast’ Lewis and the #3 rated recent feature, Ciryl ‘Bon Gamin’ Gane has been booked to headline UFC 265 on August 7th. from the Toyota Centre in Houston, Texas.
According to a report from ESPN MMA reporter, Brett Okamoto this evening, Lewis will meet with Gane, who just headlined UFC Vegas 30 on Saturday night against the #5 ranked, Alexander Volkov — with an interim heavyweight championship on the line, after current heavyweight gold holder, Francis Ngannou was unable to defend his title against Lewis in planned pairings in June and August.
Per Ngannou’s manager, Marquel Martin — the installation of an interim title into the division has come as a “complete shock” given the fact Ngannou just lifted the title at the end of March.
“This comes as a complete shock,” Martin said per Okamoto. “To make an interim title so soon, if you look at the history of this division, it comes as a surprise. We hope to get clarity and figure out something with the UFC soon. At the end of the day, they are in control of these decisions.“
New Orleans native, Lewis enters the interim title clash at the #2 ranked contender, following a stunning one-punch knockout victory over Elevation Fight Team mainstay, Curtis Blaydes in the main event of UFC Vegas 19 in February. The victory came as his fourth consecutively.
For streaking French contender, Gane — he just featured at UFC Vegas 30 on Saturday at the UFC Apex facility — scoring a one-sided unanimous decision victory over the aforenoted former Bellator and M-1 Global heavyweight champion, Alexander Volkov. The victory came as Gane’s ninth professionally as well as his second of the year following a February main event judging win over Suriname striker, Jairzinho Rozenstruik.