UFC Vegas 70 heavyweight Don’Tale Mayes faces Brazilian Augusto Sakai this weekend — but there’s another fight coming up that he’s able to shed some insight into.
Mayes (9-4, 1NC) happens to be a training partner of Jon Jones, and also fought Ciryl Gane in what happened to be Mayes’ UFC debut. That pair faces off a week down the line, in a heavyweight title fight atop UFC 285.
Being by Jones’ side as he has transitioned from light heavyweight to heavyweight, Mayes knows one thing: “that motherf*cker’s strong. I’ll just say it,” he exclaimed during Wednesday’s UFC Vegas 70 media day. “He’s not lacking anything on the strength side coming into heavyweight. I think he’ll do just fine.”
As for Gane, Mayes has no regrets taking a very tough fight as his introduction to the UFC audience. “After my Contender Series win I said I wanted to fight whoever can get me to the belt as soon as possible,” he recalled. “The UFC gave me what I wanted, and that was Ciryl Gane. I don’t regret any match-ups or anything. If I fought him today, it would be a totally different fight, but I enjoyed the experience.”
Having shared the cage with Gane for nearly a full fifteen minutes (he lost via third-round submission), Don’Tale Mayes is not at all surprised to see the success the French heavyweight has had in recent years.
“I wasn’t surprised, I figured whoever won that fight between me and him was going to be catapulted to the belt,” said Mayes. “So congrats on his success. I’ll see him.”
Watch the full UFC Vegas 70 media day appearance by Don’Tale Mayes above.