Ciryl Gane Knocks Out Tai Tuivasa
The city of love turned into the city of fisticuffs Saturday, and native son Ciryl Gane put an exclamation point on a historic event.
Gane, the former UFC interim heavyweight champion, knocked out Tai Tuivasa at 4:23 of the third round in the epic main event of UFC Paris, the promotion's first card in France.
MMA was banned in the country until early 2020. Fighters representing France went 5-0 at Accor Arena in front of a loud, raucous sell-out crowd.
When the main event started, the fans chanted and sang the French national anthem.
Tuivasa dropped Gane in the second round. When Gane finished Tuivasa a round later, the crowd went ballistic, jumping and dancing and yelling at the top of their lungs.
"Nobody on the planet expected this from the fans of France," Gane said in his postfight interview. "But, bro, look at this. I'm so happy."
Gane ranked No. 2 in the world and Tuivasa No. 5 at heavyweight. Gane was coming off a loss earlier this year in a title unification fight with former teammate Francis Ngannou.