Publish Date: 06/28/2022
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster
WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has taunted UFC heavyweight titleholder Francis Ngannou on social media, saying the Cameroonian mixed martial artist would not last a round in a fight he seeks to have at Wembley this year. Check out the top sports betting sites for betting on UFC!
Fury, who announced his retirement in April, remains vocal on social media, particularly on Twitter. Previously, he had clashed with YouTube influencer and amateur boxer Jake Paul as the latter was set to fight Fury’s brother, Tommy.
This time, the British boxer provoked Ngannou by posting a picture of him with a chicken on his head, writing, “Thought you wanted some smoke @francis_ngannou. Let’s do a proper fight! Wembley Stadium 2022.”
Ngannou, still recovering from a knee injury, wrote the following response: “Don’t you dare think I take my eyes [off] of you. You’re still my priority. I’m coming for all of the smoke. 2023.”
Ngannou’s manager, Marquel Martin, appears to be confident in his client’s abilities to fight Fury. “Francis is dangerous for Fury because the best fighter to fight him so far is Deontay Wilder. Deontay isn’t known for sweet science, but for his devastating power,” he said.
Fury claimed he was willing to fight while wearing UFC gloves in a crossover bout during his initial agreement with Ngannou on social media. Ngannou, however, asked if they could fight using MMA rules with boxing gloves instead.
The idea of the bout first surfaced when Ngannou showed up during the Fury vs. (Dillian) Whyte match earlier this April. Soon after the match concluded, both Fury and Ngannou expressed their interest in fighting each other.
Ngannou has a clause in his contract stating that he is tied to the UFC for three more fights or a year. His contract expired back in January, and he is still in the middle of renegotiation with the promotion for another contract. It is known, however, that the 35-year-old is adamant that the fight against Fury must be a part of the discussion for any future deal with the UFC to happen. Check out the best new sportsbooks for betting on UFC.
“The Tyson Fury fight has to be part of the discussion,” he said. “It’s not an option, it has to be part of the discussion because if that’s not part of the discussion now, it will never be.”
Martin, however, said that the decision is ultimately up to the UFC. “We’ve tried to get a deal done with the UFC, but we haven’t seen eye to eye,” he said. “At the end of the day, it’s Dana’s decision, it’s the UFC’s decision — whether they want to come back to the table and have a conversation.”
Earlier this year, UFC president Dana White had voiced his reluctance about allowing the crossover fight between Ngannou and Tyson. “Fury is one of the greatest boxers of all time,” he said. “You look at the guys that he’s beaten and how easily he’s beating. I don’t know, we’ll see how this whole thing plays out. I don’t like the crossover fights.”
In addition to not favoring crossover fights, White also insisted that the match between Fury and Ngannou would not be on the same level as the match between boxing legend Floyd Mayweather against the former dual-weight UFC champion Conor McGregor, which proved to be one of the most successful and lucrative fights of all time.