Dana White has been quick to praise Francis Ngannou in the past, and following the latter’s, jaw dropping KO win on Saturday, the UFC President did so again.
Ngannou took on Alistair Overeem in the co-main event of UFC 218, and he proceeded to bomb out the decorated heavyweight in the opening round. Not only was the victory Ngannou’s sixth straight since he joined the UFC in 2015, it also marked the fifth time the 31 year-old has finished a fight in the Octagon with strikes. It should also be noted that none of the last four men Ngannou has faced, made it out of the first round.
So, due to this record, and what transpired last night, White had this to say about Ngannou after UFC 218 (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“We’ve had some trouble getting him a fight,” White reported. “But once we keep this guy active and you see him doing this to all the big stars that you know and yeah, I think this guy’s going to be a rock star globally.”
“The guy, first of all, when you look at him, he looks like the heavyweight champion of the world,” White said. “I mean, he looks like the heavyweight champion of something. The guy is a monster.”
“…That’s as impressive a heavyweight knockout as you’ll ever see.”
Yup, there’s no question that Ngannou’s done nothing but impress since he joined the UFC. As a result of last night’s emphatic victory, it seems all but certain that Ngannou will fight the champ, Stipe Miocic, next. If Ngannou had just got by Overeem, then maybe the UFC would have gone in another direction (although, not likely), but one would think there’s going to be a ton of buzz behind the Cameroon fighter getting a title shot now.
It will be interesting to see whether Ngannou can handle the wrestling of Miocic. The heavy handed fighter faced an experienced wrestler in Curtis Blaydes, and earned a win. But, Miocic wrestled at a higher level in college (NCAA Division 1 vs.NJCAA), and he also has very, very, dangerous hands. Here’s hoping that bout gets booked for first quarter, 2018.