One of the best kickboxers in the world will soon be making the move to MMA, but who will Gokhan Saki fight in the UFC first? Here we’ll look at 3 options.
Gokhan Saki became a professional kickboxer in 2000. Over the past 17 years, he’s grown to become one of the most feared men in the sport thanks to his incredible speed, devastating power, and flawless technique.
“The Turkish Tyson” has not been quite as active in the kickboxing ring as of late, and his fans around the world were eagerly awaiting what would be his next move. That question has now been answered, as UK gambling news reported that Saki has officially signed with the UFC and will be competing inside the light-heavyweight category.
Who will Gokhan Saki fight in the UFC first? No one knows yet, but in this article we’ll take a look at a few possibilities.
It remains to be seen what approach the UFC will take with Saki. His striking is perhaps the most elite in the world, but we’ve yet to see how he’s able to do against a grappler. To ease his transition into the MMA world, it’s possible that the UFC matches up Saki against fellow striker and number 16th ranked light-heavyweight, Gian Villante.
Gokhan Saki bio
- 83-12 record as pro kickboxer
- Wins over Tyrone Spong, Daniel Ghita, Melvin Manhoef
- 0-1 record in MMA
- Known for devastating speed
31 year old Gian Villante has gained a reputation as a hard-nosed brawler who’s not afraid to stand with anyone. That’s been successful for him at times against fighters like Anthony Perosh and Corey Anderson, but has also gotten him into trouble against Shogun Rua and Tom Lawlor.
A fight with Villante would be a great introduction for Saki. He’s the kind of fighter that’s willing to engage in a striking war, yet has a somewhat underrated wrestling game that could help Gokhan experience what it’s like to fight in MMA. It seems likely he would come into this fight as the betting favorite with MMA betting sites like BetVictor.
If the UFC decides to go an entirely different route and want to immediately test where Gokhan stands with regards to his wrestling defense, they may match him up with 11th ranked Patrick Cummins. Pat proved himself to be one of the toughest fighters in the sport in his most recent win over Jab Blachowicz despite coming into the fight as the betting underdog according to most online sportsbooks in the UK, but his lack of defense on the feet has hurt him at times.
If you’re wondering who will Gokhan Saki fight in the UFC, Cummins might be the man. He has the perfect style to test how far Saki has improved in his ground game.
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
The last option we’ll look at with regards to who will Gokhan Saki fight next is legendary light heavyweight fighter Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. “Little Nog” is a true veteran of the sport with 30 professional fights dating back to 2001.
While the previous two fighters we listed are considered adept in one particular aspect of MMA, Nogueira is dangerous everywhere. Nog has recorded a number of KO victories throughout his career, and is also one of the most respected jiu jitsu practitioners in the sport.
In many ways, this is the perfect fight for Saki. He can showcase his talent on the feet against one of the most durable fighters in MMA, and will also be forced to defend any grappling that Anontio tries to instigate.
Who will Gokhan Saki fight in the UFC? We’ll have to wait and see. Once his first fight is announced, make sure to head to BetVictor to find Saki’s UFC betting odds. Tell us who you want to see him fight first in the comment section below!