Francis Ngannou is the heavyweight champion of the UFC. And with the belt, naturally, come the questions about a matchup with Jon ‘Bones’ Jones.
Jones vacated his light heavyweight belt in 2020 in order to move up to heavyweight. He has yet to face anyone in this new division although Dana White seemed to imply he would face the winner of Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou. Ngannou of course delivered one of the most impressive heavyweight performances in recent memory to KO the former champ.
Now the Jones matchup seems in danger of falling apart, as ‘Bones’ is requesting a fight purse of over $10 million to face Ngannou.
I had a brief phone meeting with UFC‘s lawyer Hunter a few days ago. As of right now I expressed to him that anywhere around eight to $10 million would be way too low for a fight of this magnitude. That’s all that has been discussed so far.
— BONY (@JonnyBones) March 31, 2021
Ngannou was recently interviewed by MMA on SiriusXM, where he was asked how he would feel if the Jones fight did not come to fruition. He stated the following:
“I don’t make fights. I’m just a fighter. But that would be sad. I think that would be a very good fight for everyone. Not just for me, not just for Jon Jones, and even for the UFC. For the fans out there, they’ve been asking me about this fight since when I started MMA… They’ve been telling me how good would it be if I fight Jon Jones. But at the end of the day, I actually want this fight. This will be a big fight.”
Whilst the Jones fight is Ngannou’s preference, should the UFC not come to a deal with him, there are other options for ‘The Predator.’ He stated:
But you know, if it doesn’t happen, what can I do. I just have to move on. I want to fight, I want to stay active. Derrick Lewis is there. And I think that would be a good fight.”
Lewis and Ngannou did fight previously, in an incredibly dull 5 five affair. However, since then both men have picked up spectacular finishes. Lewis has also revealed that he would be happy to face Ngannou for less than 10 million.
I’ll do it for 8 million shiiiittt @ufc
— Derrick Lewis (@Thebeast_ufc) March 31, 2021
📽️ "If it doesn't happen, what can I do? I just have to move on."
— MMA on SiriusXM (@MMAonSiriusXM) April 1, 2021