Reigning UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou is gearing up for a historic boxing showdown against the lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. The event will be taking place in Riyadh on October 28. This marks Ngannou’s first foray into professional boxing, a transition that has piqued the interest of fans and critics alike.
In preparation for this monumental clash, Ngannou has enlisted the expertise of the legendary boxing icon Mike Tyson. Known for his ferocious punching power, Tyson will be overseeing Ngannou’s training alongside his striking coach Dewey Cooper.
During a recent open workout session, Ngannou showcased his skills and spent approximately 15 minutes hitting pads and demonstrating various combinations. The presence of Mike Tyson on the sidelines drew substantial attention, with clips of the session quickly going viral on social media.
Despite the anticipation surrounding this high-stakes bout, some fans have expressed reservations about Ngannou’s performance. Many noted that he appeared somewhat labored and slower compared to other top-tier heavyweights.
Another remarked, “If he fights like he’s training he has no chance. He isn’t turning his hips enough when he’s throwing. Sometimes he does but not all the time and since you cant get in right in the gym he wont in the fight for sure.”
Ngannou’s journey to this pivotal moment has not been without its challenges. He faced a knee injury during his last UFC title defense in January of the previous year. This was followed by a protracted legal struggle to be released from his promotional contract.
Ngannou is poised to earn a staggering eight-figure purse for this bout, a substantial increase from the $600,000 disclosed for his previous UFC title defense. While this financial gain is noteworthy, some fans remain skeptical about the competitiveness of the match.
One commentator remarked, “I apologise but it’s not going to be competitive. I guess Francis gets a bag though.”
Despite concerns about Ngannou’s readiness, many believe that having a legendary figure like Mike Tyson in his corner could be a decisive advantage. As one observer noted, “Even though Mike is old, but when he demonstrates how to throw the right way of punch, there is a level to it and you can clearly see it.”