Francis Ngannou is looking to book a fight that will be among the most profitable of his career after leaving the UFC.
After contract discussions between the former UFC heavyweight champion and the promotion broke down, he was released from his contract with the organization owned by Endeavor. The UFC has given up its right to match any offers that Ngannou receives, which means that he is free to begin negotiating for possibilities with other organizations.
Despite the fact that he has received offers, it appears that Ngannou has decided to concentrate on boxing rather than mixed martial arts at the time. A move that might set up the highly awaited bout between the Cameroonian-born Frenchman and heavyweight superstar Tyson Fury. Ngannou discloses that he and his group have already begun preparations for the conflict in question.
“I’ve talked to somebody, some of his advisors,” said Ngannou in a recent interview with TMZ Sports. “They’re working on a fight with [Oleksandr] Usyk in April. So, until then, he will not be free. But I’m just trying to see if we can have an agreement before that fight.
“That will also give me some time to get prepared for a boxing fight,” continued Ngannou.
“So I have no problem with the timeline that I’m expecting, that I hope will be sometime in like June, July, which is doable. So let’s see. I think it’s too early to make a conclusion. It’s too early to say anything about it but it’s definitely something that we’re looking into.”
As plans for Fury vs. Usyk take shape, the “Gypsy King” has maintained his ambition in fighting Ngannou. The current heavyweight champion recently offered a hybrid battle with Ngannou “in a cage, [with] four-ounce gloves under Queensbury rules.”
It remains to be seen whether that kind of battle or a more typical boxing contest will take place, but Ngannou is keeping his fingers crossed that they can come to an agreement in the near future. In that case, the 36-year-old fighter has stated that he will seek the other choice that is available to him on his list of possible challengers.
“We’ve been talking about this fight the past two years,” said Ngannou. “A little over two years. I think at this point, the people are waiting for this fight and talking about this fight more than the [Anthony] Joshua fight, although the Joshua fight is still a massive fight. I would say both fights would be in the same magnitude of a fight, but we are kind of advanced and willing to fight with Tyson Fury, and it looks like that’s the way to go. Then maybe Joshua will be another option.”
In mixed martial arts, Ngannou is currently riding a winning streak of six bouts, the most recent of which being his title-unifying performance over Ciryl Gane at UFC 270 in January of last year.