Francis Ngannou signed an MMA contract in 2023, but so far, hasn't announced a fight outside of the boxing ring. In 2023 he fought Tyson Fury (and nearly won) and he started out 2024 with a massive announcement that he'll fight Anthony Joshua in March.
So what about that MMA career?
Many fans, including myself, have wondered if Ngannou ever intends to fight in the cage again.
While appearing on The MMA Hour on Monday, Jan. 8, Ngannou said “there’s a chance” he doesn't fight in MMA this year.
He's already got a lot of boxing opportunities on his plate, including a rematch with Fury.
“I win this fight, I’m fighting Fury –period,” Ngannou said. “Whether or not he has the belt.”
Fury is scheduled to fight Oleksandr Usyk for the undisputed heavyweight title Feb. 17, just a month before Ngannou fights Joshua on March 8.
Francis Ngannou says he was 'was waiting for Fury' rematch before he got the Anthony Joshua call
“There has always been talk about that – always. Even after the fight, the Minister stepped in the ring and said, ‘Get ready for the rematch.’ It’s going to happen. They have Fury-Usyk going on, so (Joshua) was the opportunity. I was waiting for Fury, but this was the opportunity that I was happy to take. At the end of the day, this won’t take anything from the Fury rematch."
This just furthers the thought that MMA is the farthest thing from his mind. Thankfully PFL seems on board with his decision, despite not having any direct promotional advantage to his boxing career.
“When I received a call and the offer for proposal of this fight, what happened? I reached out to PFL and told them because we’re in the business together,” Ngannou said. “They gave me their blessing and said they can’t take away this opportunity from me, so I was happy to do that. I didn’t want to know what else they’re going to say, as long as they approved. They didn’t have a problem with this.”