UFC Adelaide was a 'shit day at the office' for the Juggernaut team with Mark Hunt, Tai Tuivasa and Tyson Pedro suffering defeat. It was a delightful day at the office for Auckland City Kickboxing though as Kai Kara France won vs Elias Garcia via a decision, in his first UFC fight. As France looked slick in his first fight, this was also the end of Hunt's UFC journey and while Hunt fought valiantly against American Justin Willis, it was a tough watch seeing Hunt bow out of UFC life.
France's opponent Garcia took this fight on short notice, a niggly task that goes both ways as France had to switch up his preparations for a new fighter late in camp. Not that it hindered France's ability to land strikes though as he put up 86 significant strikes to Garcia's 16 and while France throw more than double the total number of strikes than Garcia (178 vs 73), he carried that ratio into his success-rate; France landed 48 percent of significant strikes, while Garcia landed 21 percent.
For #KiwiUFC fans who haven't seen too much of France before, this fight showcased what makes France a low key funky prospect in a division that may be up shit's creek. The UFC appears to be moving their priorities away from the flyweight division, which casts some uncertainty over France's future in the division, although France is open to moving up a weight class to bantamweight.
France showed the type of power that many feel the flyweight division lacks and thus, France won Fight of the Night honours. There were no takedown attempts from France, however France kept Garcia's ground-game in check as Garcia could only land 1 of 7 takedown attempts. With France then landing a whole lot of damage on the ground when he they were on the mat, France controlled the fight.
Having won his previous fight in Glory via submission, France does have the wide range of skills required to climb through the UFC. His power, for a small lad though is what makes France an exciting prospect and with Israel Adesanya watching on, while Dan Hooker prepares for his upcoming fight vs Edson Barboza, France is as interesting a prospect as any of the #KiwiUFC up and comers.
Here's all the wash up from UFC Adelaide...