Newly crowned UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou is not resting on his laurels. Less than a month after his victory against Stipe Miocic at the UFC 260 event in Las Vegas, he has already given serious thought to who he believes will be a worthy opponent when he steps back into the octagon to defend his title.
In a recent episode of Hotboxin’, the podcast hosted by Mike Tyson, Ngannou confirmed what was already widely rumored to be true: he wants to face off against Jon Jones, who is expected to make his heavyweight debut this year.
“I would like that fight to happen,” he said. “That would definitely be the number one fight, Jon Jones, definitely.” He went on to compare Jones’ fighting style to that of his last opponent, Miocic. “Jones definitely has more tools in his pocket than Stipe,” he said, “but I’m not sure if he’s as tough as Stipe though.”
A light heavyweight fighter, Jones hasn’t competed in UFC in over a year, as he’s been busy bulking up, but he has expressed similar interest in a match against Ngannou, with the only remaining obstacle being adequate compensation.
“I think it’s going to happen,” said Tyson. “It’s ludicrous if it doesn’t happen… It all comes down to money right now.”
The official odds for such a fight currently depict Ngannou as the likeliest victor, which Tyson thinks might actually be a bookies’ tactic that would help to create a “David vs. Goliath” narrative which favors Jones.
“To defend Jon Jones here, he is, pound-for-pound, the best fighter on the planet,” added co-host Brendan Schaub. “He’s undefeated for a reason.”
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