‘Don’t Blink!’ Israel Adesanya Weighs In On Francis Ngannou vs. Anthony Joshua

Adesanya drops his insight on the two boxers ahead of their upcoming fight.

Izzy On Joshua Ngannou
(via @stylebender, @anthony_joshua - Instagram)

Israel Adesanya is split between Francis Ngannou and Anthony Joshua. 

The boxing super-fight, billed as ‘Knockout Chaos’, goes down from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia this Friday. Ex-UFC Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou will look to shake up the sport of boxing again, this time with a win, as he takes on accomplished superstar Anthony Joshua.

Adesanya On Ngannou vs. Joshua 

Adesanya knows each half of the headliner, Ngannou from his UFC Championship days where the two represented Africa on the world stage and Joshua, who shares Adesanya’s Nigerian heritage. Wanting to keep them as friends, not foes, the former UFC Middleweight Champion offers analysis on Joshua vs. Ngannou in place of a prediction.

“I love this for both guys, you know why? Cause they both win,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “They’re both gonna get paid, ridiculous amount of money, status, all that.

“But now when it comes to fighting, I know AJ can box. I know AJ is a specialist, but I know Francis can fight. I know Francis can fight. He showed in his last boxing fight that he could beat, if not the best, one of the best boxers of this generation or ever. It’s not my place to pick a winner. I’m not either of these men. They’re gonna pick the winner themselves. But I have a weird feeling that you don’t wanna blink in this fight. I have a weird feeling. You don’t wanna blink in this fight.”

That’s probably not a bad idea, as Joshua and Ngannou have a combined 35 KO’s in their professional fighting careers.

Joshua ‘Very Strong Individual’, But So Is Francis Ngannou

Adesanya gives Joshua and Ngannou their flowers, giving insight on what the fighters will each bring to the ring, come Mar. 8.

“Yeah, I think [there will be more activity],” Adesanya continued. “Especially the way AJ fought his last fight. And also I’ve talked to AJ about other things… But, he’s a very strong individual. So is Francis. One thing is AJ can crack, Junior Fa told me he’s one of the best athletes he’s ever seen when he was training with him in London or something years ago, like as a youngster when he first came into the game or something. Junior Fa might have told me that.

“Francis, one thing people don’t understand [is his toughness]. You realize he got elbowed by Tyson? Did not even blink. Francis has just got a strong spirit. Man, s*** is crazy.

Ngannou Is ‘Playing His Own Game’, Not ‘Anyone Else’s’

Francis Ngannou’s sequel boxing appearance against Joshua comes after a UFC break-up last year, where ‘The Predator’ finished out his contract with the promotion. The knockout artist tested free agency and found himself in mega-fights with Tyson Fury and now Anthony Joshua.

While Adesanya says everybody’s battle with the UFC is ‘different’, the promotional all-star is glad to see Ngannou pave his own way outside of the Octagon:

“I’m just happy he’s in this position now. He’s player one. He’s grabbing control and playing his own game, not anyone else’s game. I love that for him. But yeah, I’m not gonna pick a winner in this fight. Look, I’m gonna watch, I’m gonna hope both guys come out unscathed. I just hate when people, I love like, get hurt. I don’t even care about wins or losses. I just hate when they get hurt. I’m just like, ‘Ah, f***.'”

Published on March 6, 2024 at 1:50 pm
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