Eric Nicksick Explains Why Francis Ngannou vs. Tyson Fury Didn’t Transcend Like Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor

Ngannou's coach thinks the fight with "The Gypsy King" could've been bigger.

Eric Talks Francis Boxing Debut
Eric Talks Francis Boxing Debut - Image credit @danawhit @eric_xcmma Instagram
  • Coach Eric Nicksick recalled how UFC president Dana White turned down Tyson Fury vs. Francis Ngannou fight
  • Nicksick was intrigued after the UFC boss showed support for Fury vs. Jon Jones boxing match

Francis Ngannou’s MMA coach Eric Nicksick looked back at the situation in which the UFC prevented what the Tyson Fury boxing match could’ve reached.

Dana had issues

Speaking Jaxxon podcast, Nicksick revealed that Ngannou has always been determined to switch to boxing until they had an opportunity to raise to UFC president Dana White during a dinner. Their plan sounded good but Nicksick said White laid out his issues on the business side of the idea and also explained that it worked out well with Conor McGregor back then because it wasn’t complicated as Floyd Mayweather was technically retired.   

“Over time it started to become closer and closer to. ‘Man this might actually happen’ you know and then when he beat Ciryl Gane, we went to dinner with Dana, Hunter [Campbell], myself, and Francis, just the four of us. Francis said point blank, ‘I want to box, but I want to box under the Zuffa banner. I wanna box with you guys. I want us to make money together. You guys did it once with Conor and Floyd and made a ton of money. and everybody was happy in the long run,” Nicksick said.

“Dana had his points on why he felt it wouldn’t work because of Tyson Fury still being [WBC champion] and everything. It worked better for Floyd because he was essentially retired. So Dana had his business side of things in his points that he brought up and you know Francis, I wouldn’t say didn’t believe it but he just felt like it still could have been something that could have gotten done. Unfortunately, over time, the relationship between the UFC and Francis didn’t work out,” he added.

The change of heart was interesting

Nicksick then admitted that when White was down to support a Jon Jones vs. Fury boxing match, he found the sudden switch “interesting.” However, he regrets the fact that they could’ve done it with Ngannou.

“I did find it interesting that it was a hard no for us when Francis was looking to fight Tyson Fury and then Dana kind of changed his tune when it was possibly Jon Jones you know that was kind of like we wanted that opportunity to be part of Zuffa boxing and make it work for all parties involved and unfortunately it didn’t work out,” Nicksick explained.

Some speculate that the UFC’s absence contributed to the reported Fury vs. Ngannou flop in terms of PPV sales. But after witnessing how epic the match was, many are now convinced that the rematch would surely be massive as far as overall success goes.

Check out Nicksick’s full podcast talk below:

Published on November 29, 2023 at 1:44 pm
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