Whereas he says that every one choices stay on the desk, Francis Ngannou’s supervisor says that his fighter would possibly decide to dip his toes into boxing’s heavyweight fold earlier than diving headlong into the deep finish.
Ngannou, 36, is broadly anticipated to make his skilled boxing debut someday later this 12 months, months after he left the UFC because the promotion’s heavyweight champion following the expiration of his contract with the world’s largest blended martial arts organisation. ‘The Predator’ has since signed a big-money deal to symbolize the Skilled Fighters League (PFL) forward of a debut MMA combat for them in 2024, however the Cameroonian has made clear that his subsequent transfer will come within the boxing ring relatively than the cage.
And whereas he has been linked to virtually the entire greatest names within the sport’s heavyweight fold, Ngannou’s supervisor Marquel Martin informed Ariel Helwani on a latest episode of The MMA Hour by way of MMA Preventing that his first foray into boxing might are available in quite a few alternative ways.
“We shuttle on that on a regular basis,” Martin mentioned of Ngannou’s boxing debut. “We’d love if one of many huge fights current himself, but it surely looks like they’re sort of tied up. So I assume tune-up combat. Francis isn’t a standard boxer, so each combat is an enormous combat. However I do know Francis desires to problem himself.”
Martin additionally harassed Ngannou’s need to advertise the expansion of fight sports activities in his native continent of Africa — one thing which he says he sees as taking place sooner relatively than later.
“I believe clearly that’s one thing that Francis has all the time needed to do,” Martin defined. “The UFC is aware of that and that’s what I needed to all the time push for. That’s going to occur. Who it’s going to be towards, we don’t know. We’ve had numerous optimistic conversations. As you understand, boxing is even crazier than the MMA area, so issues simply take time.
Clearly, we’re within the social media age the place nobody desires to be affected person for something, however I’ll say with out giving freely an excessive amount of that issues are optimistic, they’re getting into the appropriate route. I believe individuals will probably be shocked by what comes of it.
“And on the finish of the day this isn’t about simply cash. Francis desires to develop the game in Africa. Fight sports activities. Once more, one of many explanation why I fought for him so passionately or no matter you wish to name it’s as a result of this dude is larger than himself, the combat sport. I exploit to inform him, ‘Bro, you realise you’re greater than what you assume you’re. You’re not simply meant to be a champion. You’re meant to be a determine in your fellow countrymen to present them hope, what you probably did in life.’