The UFC is back in its APEX facility again this weekend for UFC Vegas 30: Ciryl Gane vs Alexander Volkov. UFC Vegas 30 features a major heavyweight main event as well as a number of other intriguing contests on the card.
On that note, here are the predicted outcomes for UFC Vegas 30: Ciryl Gane vs Alexander Volkov.
#1 UFC heavyweight division: Ciryl Gane vs Alexander Volkov
With the next UFC heavyweight title fight looking likely to be between champion Francis Ngannou and challenger Derrick Lewis, and Jon Jones still on the outside looking in, there’s every chance that the winner of this one gets the next title shot.
That alone makes it a huge fight, but it’s also huge in a literal sense. Ciryl Gane and Alexander Volkov are amongst the biggest fighters on the UFC roster, with Gane standing at 6' 5” and weighing around 250 lbs, while Volkov is 6' 7” and 265 lbs.
With both men on strong runs; Gane undefeated in the UFC at 5-0 and Volkov 3-1 since the start of 2019, their fight could be an intriguing one. Perhaps the most interesting thing here could be how Gane deals with a taller opponent for the first time in the UFC.
The Frenchman does have a slight reach advantage – 81” to 80” – but that obviously doesn’t take the leg length into account, and Volkov is definitely adept in keeping a foe at the end of his jabs and front kicks. Add in Volkov’s somewhat underrated ground game and takedowns, and on paper at least, this does sound like a potentially tricky match for Bon Gamin.
However, it’s hard to oversell quite how good a striker Gane has proven himself to be thus far in the UFC. A veteran of countless Muay Thai bouts, Gane is dangerous from literally any position inside the octagon.
He showed he could use smart footwork, pressing and angles to beat a similarly credentialed kickboxer in his recent fight with Jairzinho Rozenstruik. He has also 'abused' the likes of Tanner Boser and Junior Dos Santos from the clinch.
More to the point, the Frenchman is no mug on the ground either. He’s the only UFC heavyweight since 2009 to land a heel-hook submission, and he has also shown that he has strong takedowns and decent top control, too.
Volkov is an excellent fighter in his own right. But despite his lanky physique, he’s also quite plodding inside the octagon, which is a major contrast to Gane’s more explosive nature.
Overall, there’s definitely a chance that Volkov could win this fight. He’s capable of keeping an opponent at bay; he does have knockout power in his hands, and in heavyweight, anything can happen.
However, Drago likely doesn’t bring anything in terms of a striking game that Gane hasn’t seen before. So the Frenchman should hold a major advantage in terms of speed.
Therefore, it’s likely that Gane could use the first round or two to gauge the distance and then catch Volkov with something nasty and put him away, setting himself up for a UFC title shot in the process.