Image: Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC
Ciryl Gane defeated Derrick Lewis by third round TKO at UFC 265 Saturday night to take home the interim heavyweight title, spoiling Lewis' return to his hometown of Houston, Texas.
The undefeated Gane (10-0) was in control from start to finish, using speed and smarts to dodge Lewis' dangerous attacks that flattened previous opponents. He now likely moves on to fight heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou if he and the UFC can rebuild a bridge that was burned in failed negotiations with Jon Jones and then this fight being made.
The beginning of the end came in the third round when Gane landed a kick flush to Lewis' lead leg. Lewis was clearly which allowed the confident Gane to come inside with a jab that opened up a two-punch combo that opened up the door. He landed hard uppercuts to a covered up Lewis who still tried to fight back with power uppercuts and pull off another incredible upset.
It was not to be as Gane evaded those shots and landed a head kick to a waning Lewis who eventually slumped after a punch to his left eye that he was complaining earlier was poked. After some heavy hammer punches from Gane to a covered up Lewis, the fight was stopped.
This was Gane's sixth UFC fight since debuting in August 2019. The loss snapped a four-fight win streak for Lewis who was getting his second UFC heavyweight title opportunity.