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Ciryl Gane eyes UFC return in September — ‘Sergei Pavlovich would be a good opponent’

Ciryl Gane wants to make his UFC return in September.

That’s according to coach Fernand Lopez, who is helping Gane pick up the pieces after “Bon Gamin” got submitted by Jon Jones in roughly two minutes in the UFC 285 pay-per-view (PPV) main event earlier this year in Las Vegas, the second time the power-punching Parisian came up short in his chance to capture the heavyweight crown.

So what went wrong?

“It’s kind of really hard to pinpoint what went wrong,” Lopez told Middle Easy. “I want to say that we need to accept that someone is just better than you and let that go. It’s hard for me to tell you exactly at which point. Obviously, we had that 90 seconds where Ciryl was in a bad spot and tried to defend. We didn’t have a good time trying to defend whatsoever. I don’t know what happened. I still [haven’t] figured it out. We’ve been talking, trying to debrief about everything. Talking like, ‘Okay, what happened? Is there anything emotional that happened between your walk to the cage?’”

Jones was able to lock horns with Gane and drag him to the floor with relative ease, then sunk in a fight-ending guillotine choke after making a couple of quick adjustments. Gane’s inability to remain upright also cost him the UFC 270 headliner against Francis Ngannou when “The Predator” used his wrestling to neutralize “Bon Gamin’s” offensive striking.

“So what we did right after is try to figure out if there’s something wrong,” Lopez continued. “Strategy, is there something wrong? We ended up just saying that, ‘You know what? Let’s just try to walk away. Try to train again. Try to be a better fighter in all the areas. That’s it.’ Sometimes, we people tend to try to find who is at fault. Who did the bad thing and sometimes you just have to admit that… When you go for the Olympic games, you will only have one person win gold and then you will have silver and bronze, and that day, Jon Jones had the gold and that was very disappointing for all of us, including Ciryl.”

With Jones expected to defend his title against former champion Stipe Miocic at some point later this year (New York in November appears to be the frontrunner), Lopez is hoping to get Gane back in action against Russian bruiser Sergei Pavlovich, who is ranked one spot below “Bon Gamin” in the official heavyweight rankings.

“September,” Lopez said about Gane’s return. “Sergei Pavlovich would be a good opponent.”

This story originally appeared on MMA Mania

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