Francis Ngannou’s contract situation has been widely reported – what nobody anticipated is that White was taking it personally. Prior to the fight White had downplayed the tensions between UFC, himself, Ngannou’s management and the champ himself saying:
‘I’ve been in contract drama for 20 years with people. It’s part of the business. I honestly don’t know where we’ll end up after Saturday.
‘We’ll see how the fight goes, we’ll see what happens and I’m sure we’ll figure it out one way or another.’
‘Francis and I have had our moments over the last several years. I bumped into him at dinner a few weeks ago and we had a good conversation. ‘
‘It was funny because we needed to talk. We needed to see each other and the universe made it happen.’
‘We’ll see how these things play out. I don’t blame Francis as much as I blame the not so very smart people that surround him.”
However once it was determined that Ngannou is a champion once again White ditched!
UFC Matchmaker Mick Maynard did his best to not overshadow the moment and hung the belt on the waist of Francis Ngannou.
Following the event White was once again missing in action. The post fight press conference – that he usually leads was hostless. It went on to feature 4 of the key fighters for UFC 270 – Moreno, Figueiredo, Ngannou and Gane.
And Ngannou even had to address the whole situation revealing that he had nothing to do with the switch.
“I don’t know. You have to ask him,” Ngannou said when asked why White didn’t stick around to put the belt around his waist. “No, I did not have anything to do about that. I think that was their decision. I’m about to ask about that, too.”
Ngannou’s agent Marquel Martin, who works for Creative Artists Agency (CAA) — a talent agency that’s also a well-known rival to the UFC owners at Endeavor released an insane text he is rumored to have gotten from the UFC brass.
White has yet to weigh in on the subject.