Chatri Sityodtong, the CEO of ONE Championship, believes his top heavyweights would dust UFC Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou.
Ngannou rules the roost in the UFC’s heavyweight division and he made that quite clear in his title unification bout against Ciryl Gane back in January. “The Predator” defeated Gane via unanimous decision.
It was the last bout on Ngannou’s UFC deal but now the champion’s clause is in effect. Ngannou has said he’d be content with sitting on the sidelines until the deal expires if he isn’t satisfied with a new offer.
ONE CEO Has Bold Claim On Francis Ngannou
During the ONE X post-fight press conference, Sityodtong expressed his belief that his top heavyweights would easily defeat Ngannou (h/t South China Morning Post).
“I like Francis Ngannou but I think our heavyweights would smoke him.
“He’s just not a complete fighter. For sure, if you ask any expert martial artist, you look at [ONE interim heavyweight champ] Anatoly Malykhin – Russian national pedigree wrestler, dynamite in his hands. Much faster than Francis, much better ground game, black-belt level.
“He was also a submission champion in Europe. You look at [ONE heavyweight champ] Arjan Bhullar, wrestling, boxing. Francis is not very impressive on the ground. He’s got big, looping punches, he’s not as technical of a boxer as Anatoly or even Arjan.”
Ngannou will be out of action for a while after tearing his MCL and damaging his ACL in the Gane fight. He has undergone successful surgery.
UFC President Dana White remains hopeful that he can strike a new deal with his heavyweight champion. In the meantime, it seems he may be preparing to book an interim title fight. The UFC boss didn’t rule out Jon Jones competing for interim gold if the company goes in that direction.