Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) touched down in Paris, France last night for the first time ever to stage a special “Fight Night” event that saw Ciryl Gane defeat Tai Tuivasa in the third round in devastating fashion (see it again here) in the headlining act. In the co-main event, Robert Whittaker put on a masterclass against Marvin Vettori, cruising his way to a unanimous decision win (highlights).
Biggest Winner: Ciryl Gane
Gane made one hell of a statement in his first-ever mixed martial arts (MMA) fight on his home turn of Paris, France, knocking out a very-tough Tai Tuivasa in the third round, and he did it after getting dropped himself and facing danger in round two. The win is a great way to bounce back after suffering the first loss of his career against Francis Ngannou and is a huge leap forward on his quest back to a championship fight. To make things a bit sweet for “Bon Gamin,” he is now another great candidate to welcome Jon Jones to the Heavyweight division in case Francis Ngannou sits out a bit longer and a “Bones” vs. Stipe Miocic fight doesn’t materialize.
Runner Up: Robert Whittaker
“The Reaper” once again put on an absolute masterclass after he defeated Marvin Vettori — the No. 2 ranked fighter at Middleweight — after 15 minutes of action, and it seemed as if he barely broke a sweat. With the win, “The Reaper” solidifies himself as the next best fighter in the division to champion, Israel Adesanya. Speaking of which, “The Last Stylebender” is set to face Alex Pereira at UFC 281 in November, and Whittaker will be a very interested observer. Should Adesanya win, booking a third fight between he and Whittaker will be a tough call seeing as how Izzy has two dominate wins over Whittaker already. Should Pereira win, an instant rematch could occur, depending on how he gets the job done. Nevertheless, all Whittaker has to do now is sit back to see how it all unfolds.
Biggest Loser (s): Khalid Taha and Alessio Di Chirico
We’re going with two fighters this week because both Taha and Chirico suffered devastating knockouts to Roman Kopylov and Cristian Quinonez, respectively. What makes the losses even worse is the fact that both men had been struggling coming into the event. For Taha, this is now his third straight loss, while Chirico suffers his second defeat in a row, but is a horrid 1-5 in his last six fights inside the Octagon. If I were a betting man — and I am — these two are prime candidates to be on the chopping block when the next round of cuts occurs.