In what nearly became the biggest upset in combat sports history, Francis Ngannou, bamboozled, battered and sensationally dropped Tyson Fury in a moment that shook up the world. And with ‘The Predator’s’ stock at an all-time high, we’re looking at his five best options for his next dance partner.
In a fight in which no one gave him a chance, the Cameroonian produced the greatest debut performance the sport has ever seen. Exhibiting his incredible powers of self-belief, he stood tall in the face of ‘The Gypsy King’, bit down on his gumshield and got stuck in.
Showcasing his well-rounded fighting game, he thrived where others have crumbled, walking into the fire and bullying his rival in the clinch. And while the judges didn’t give him the result the world felt he deserved, it’s fair to say that the anticipation to see him back in the ring is through the roof. Therefore, without further ado, let’s have a look at who his next opponent could be.
1) Tyson Fury
When Fury announced his retirement after beating Deontay Wilder and Dillian Whyte, the fans considered him one of the greatest to ever lace up the gloves. But rather than sail off into the sunset, he let his greed get the better of him.
After setting false deadlines to settle his differences with Anthony Joshua, he opted to take on Derek Chisora, a man whom he’d already defeated twice in dominating fashion. To make matters worse, he then strung the whole world along, negotiating an Oleksandr Usyk fight, only to toss it aside in favour of battling a mixed martial artist who’d never had a boxing match before. But his attempt at getting an ‘Easy pay-day’ didn’t work out as planned.
While his hand was raised, Fury’s legacy is in the toilet. With many thinking he lost the bout, it’s of optimum importance that he give Ngannou the rematch and settle the score once and for all.
2) Deontay Wilder
In combat sports history, we’ve sat on the edge of our seats, watching power punchers like George Foreman, Earnie Shavers and Mike Tyson, but their dynamite fists all pale in comparison to the explosives contained in the gloves of Francis Ngannou and Deontay Wilder.
With the touch of death in their hands, a collision between the two would make for a bout in which either could go to sleep at any given second. And to make things extra spicy, the American’s reportedly interested in doing it in the world of MMA.
3) Anthony Joshua
After taking years of verbal abuse from Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua can finally get his own back. While his last couple of performances haven’t been vintage, the former world champion’s emerged a clear winner, which is more than can be said for his arch-nemesis.
With Eddie Hearn already flirting with a ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ type match-up, Ngannou has another opportunity to put his name in lights. And considering AJ’s recent vulnerability, the former UFC champion will believe he’s carrying the firepower to send the Brit into retirement.
4) Derek Chisora
Throughout the build-up to Fury-Ngannou, we heard many a promoter claim that Derek Chisora would beat the MMA icon. However, in a moment in which they had to eat humble pie, the world watched as the former sandminer produced a showing that undeniably exceeded anything the Londoner was able to muster in three fights.
Therefore, the conversation has turned to a match-up between the pair, with many touting Ngannou as the favourite. And with such a fiery personality, that’s bound to send Chisora stir-crazy.
5) Jon Jones
Granted, Ngannou did far better in the boxing realm than any of us thought possible. However, to his core, his home will always be in the cage. And there’s one match-up we’re all begging to see.
After years of causing havoc outside of the sport, more than a fair few people want Jon Jones to get his comeuppance. Alas, due to ‘Bones’ formidable skills, they watched in frustration, as he outclassed everyone who dared set foot in the cage with him.
But with bone-crushing power in both hands, Ngannou might be the only man on the planet capable of finally putting the legend in his place.
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