Ciryl Gane understands why UFC President Dana White might not have been excited about the UFC Fight Night 186 poster.
Gane (8-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) earned a relatively uneventful unanimous decision victory over Jairzinho Rozenstruik (11-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) in Saturday’s heavyweight main event at UFC Apex in Las Vegas. It was his first headlining spot, and apparently White wasn’t elated by what he saw.
Although White did not attend the UFC Fight Night 186 post-fight press conference, he relayed some thoughts on Gane’s victory via Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole, who shared the message directly with Gane.
“Everyone talks about Ciryl as a great contender, but look what Francis Ngannou did to Jairzinho,” White wrote to Iole. “This was his introduction party and his chance to show the world who he is. He won, but let’s just leave it at that. Won.”
Gane said he understands White’s perspective, although he is not entirely to blame. The cage commentary team of Jon Anik, Michael Bisping and Paul Felder put a lot of pressure on Rozenstruik, who landed with just 42 significant punches in 25 minutes, as opposed to Gane’s 102.
There was neither a big highlight nor a dramatic moment in the fight. And for that reason, Gane said he understands why White might have been disappointed.
“I can understand that,” Gane said. “He’s the boss and he wants to make money, so you want the guy to be marketable. People want the show. They want the big KO. So yeah, I didn’t finish the fight. I tried, but I don’t. I can understand that (criticism), but I’m fine. “
All of that aside, Gane said he feels pretty positive about the win. He just beat a more experienced opponent in his first UFC main event to advance to 8-0 in his career, and he’s happy with the effort he put in to get there.
“I think I did well,” Gane said. “I handled the fight standing up. I tried to go down. I did the teardown. I think I handled the fight well on my feet. “