Francis Ngannou won’t be fighting any time soon after having successful knee surgery, but when he is ready, his sights are still set on Tyson Fury.
Ngannou provided an update on his YouTube channel, telling fans he’ll be “out for quite a while” following his surgery this past month. While many don’t necessarily believe a world currently exists where a fight between Ngannou and Fury will happen, the UFC heavyweight champion sees things differently.
“I don’t really care about what will be, I just think it will be a fight against Tyson Fury,” Ngannou said. “It can be in a phone booth, or wherever, but that fight will happen. That fight will happen.”
Fury, of course, is preparing to defend his WBC heavyweight title against mandatory challenger Dillian Whyte in London on April 23. Appearing on The MMA Hour in March, Fury confirmed he would retire after the bout with Whyte, though “The Gypsy King” was keeping his options open for a potential special fight with Ngannou.
“I don’t count that as a real boxing fight,” Fury said. “That’s not a boxing fight. That’s gonna be a ‘special’ fight. That will be in a cage in four-ounce gloves, in Las Vegas, at the Raiders Stadium.
“I will have retired from competitive, championship boxing, and I’ll be ready to do the crossover fights completely. He won’t be the UFC heavyweight champion anymore, I won’t be the WBC heavyweight champion anymore, but I will still be the lineal heavyweight champion because they can’t take that from me!”
“The Predator” has been at odds with the UFC over his contract status since he became champion by knocking out Stipe Miocic at UFC 260 in March 2021. The No. 3 ranked pound-for-pound fighter in MMA Fighting’s Global Rankings went on to defend his title at UFC 270 against Ciryl Gane, winning via unanimous decision despite entering the fight with the knee injury.
While his UFC future is uncertain, Ngannou understands a fight with Fury would take place inside the squared circle, and not in the confines of the UFC’s octagon.
“Obviously, he will not come to MMA,” Ngannou said. “That’s not something that would happen. He would get killed.
“When you see heavyweights getting in the octagon or in the ring, everybody could knock everybody out. That’s a fact. And it’s also not easy to knock somebody out and it could go to a decision. We’ve seen it. Everything is possible.”