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Forbes
Forbes
2 Sep 2023


UFC Fight Night: Gane v Spivac

PARIS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 02: (R-L) Ciryl Gane of France punches Serghei Spivac of Moldova in a ... [+] heavyweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at The Accor Arena on September 02, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

In front of a raucous crowd in Paris at The Accor Arena, Ciryl Gane and Manon Fiorot made their countrymen happy with winning performances in the main and co-main events, respectively.

In the main event, Gane battered Serghei Spivac for nearly 10 minutes en route to a second-round TKO victory. Gane, a former interim UFC heavyweight champion used his outstanding stand-up abilities to dismantle Spivac.

By the beginning of the second round, Spivac appeared to be looking for a way out.

After a series of unanswered strikes from Gane, referee Marc Goddard rescued Spivac from further punishment calling an end to the fight.

UFC Fight Night: Gane v Spivac

PARIS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 02: (L-R) Ciryl Gane of France punches Serghei Spivac of Moldova in a ... [+] heavyweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at The Accor Arena on September 02, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Gane outstruck Spivac 94-14 with significant strikes and he stuffed the latter’s only takedown attempt of the fight. Coming in, Spivac was ranked No. 1 by the UFC and Gane was No. 2.

Those rankings will flip on Monday, so what’s next for Gane?

No-4-ranked Tom Aspinall was on hand in Paris, and he expressed an interest in fighting the winner of the Gane-Spivac bout. There’s no reason Aspinall shouldn’t get his wish, though Gane didn’t take the bait from UFC analyst Michael Bisping when the question was posed to him during the post-fight interview.

Still, it would be a surprise if Aspinall isn’t Gane’s next opponent.

With Aspinall coming off a TKO win over Marcin Tybura in July, it would appear both fighters are on the same timeline. A December or January show seems like a possibility for their bout, which would likely position them to face the winner of the Jon Jones-Stipe Miocic clash which is scheduled for UFC 295 in November.

In the co-main event, Fiorot welcomed former UFC women’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas to the flyweight division. Fiorot outfought Namajunas, who looked like a someone competing in a weight class above their ideal division.

FRA-UFC-MMA-WOMEN-FLYWEIGHT-FIOROT-NAMAJUNAS

French mixed martial arts fighter Manon Fiorot (R) fights against US mixed martial arts fighter Rose ... [+] Namajunas (L) on the octogone during their UFC Lightweight bout at The Accor Arena in Paris, on September 2, 2023. (Photo by JULIEN DE ROSA / AFP) (Photo by JULIEN DE ROSA/AFP via Getty Images)

AFP via Getty Images

Still, Namajunas made a solid account of herself as a boxer, but Fiorot’s punches seemed to make a bigger impact and she landed the more telling blows. One judge scored the fight 30-27, which I thought ignored Namajunas’ strong work in the third frame, but ultimately, it is tough to find fault in the decision.

Like Gane, it would appear Fiorot has a logical next opponent lined up.

Erin Blanchfield is ranked No. 2 in the women’s flyweight division after scoring a unanimous decision win over Taila Santos in Singapore, a week before Fiorot’s victory.

Fiorot was ranked No. 3 heading into the battle with Namajunas. After her win, she should hold her spot. Former champion Valentina Shevchenko is ranked No. 1 after losing her title to Alexa Grasso in March. Shevchenko and Grasso have a rematch set for Sept. 16 at Noche UFC in Las Vegas.

It would appear things are perfectly aligned for Fiorot to get a fight with Blanchfield soon, perhaps on the same main card as the proposed Gane-Aspinall bout.

The winner of Fiorot-Blanchfield would be deserving and is likely to get a shot at the winner of the Grasso-Shevchenko rematch–unless the latter wins and they run it back for a rubber match.

In any case, this method of logical matchmaking that we’ve come to expect from the UFC is what MMA fans appreciate and many boxing fans wish existed in their sport.

Here is a look at all of the results from UFC Paris: