The highly anticipated clash between heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury and former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou has finally been confirmed.
The two formidable fighters are scheduled to face off in a boxing match on October 28 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as reported by ESPN’s Mike Coppinger.
Although the specifics of the rules and the number of rounds for this exhibition are yet to be disclosed, fans are eagerly awaiting this monumental showdown.
Speculation about a potential bout between Fury and Ngannou has been circulating for over a year. The talks gained traction in April 2022 after Fury’s victory over Dillian Whyte, where he expressed his desire to face Ngannou in an exhibition that could take place “however he wants it: in a cage, in a boxing ring, in boxing gloves, UFC gloves, we can make it happen.” The Englishman, aged 34, made it clear that he was willing to compete against the UFC icon under various conditions.
Since his victory over Whyte, Fury (33-0-1, 24 KOs) went on to complete a trilogy against Derek Chisora in December. However, he has been without an opponent since then, leaving fans eagerly awaiting his next challenge.
On the other hand, Ngannou (20-3-3 MMA record) last competed in January 2022 against Cyril Gane at UFC 270, successfully defending his UFC heavyweight championship with a unanimous decision victory. The 36-year-old subsequently parted ways with the UFC and signed a contract with the PFL, a deal that enables him to explore opportunities in both boxing and MMA.
In March, Ngannou revealed his aspirations to venture into boxing, stating, “My next step has to be boxing. I want to do one boxing match first, and then maybe go back to MMA because I still enjoy MMA. I want to do a couple of fights in boxing.” He expressed optimism about finalizing fight dates and locations, highlighting that significant announcements were on the horizon.
Ngannou’s patience has paid off, leading to the monumental match against Fury, one of the most accomplished boxers in the world.
This is a major win for Ngannou, who will be promoting the event via his new company Gimik. Gimik is a jab at Dana White who was trying to sabotage the exhibition and the major payday for Ngannou saying he doesn’t make ‘gimmick’ events prior to trying to lure in Fury into a Jon Jones match up and resurrecting a BMF belt as to upstage Ngannou’s announcements.
“PFL’s going to pay this guy to train for a boxing match that may not even happen and that they might not even be involved in. How does that make any sense?“
“I mean Anthony Joshua called it a gimmick fight this week, you know. When asked about that fight, he’s like ‘I’m focused on fighting the best guys in the world. I’m not interested in the gimmick fight right now. And that’s one of the big problems with boxing right now.” White concluded.
Since 2014, Benny A. King has been fully immersed in the world of combat sports. Starting with a blog about Greco Roman wrestling, Benny’s passion for combat sports has led him to explore various disciplines.