PFL CEO Peter Murray confirmed Francis Ngannou will fight in MMA within the next twelve months.
In the first half of 2023, Ngannou shocked the world when he parted ways with the UFC and signed a lucrative contract with the PFL. Since then, ‘The Predator’ has further changed the landscape of combat sports by securing a massive payday for a boxing match against Tyson Fury that he nearly won.
Ngannou is now scheduled to fight Anthony Joshua in a ten-round boxing match on March 8, which should generate millions of dollars for the former UFC heavyweight champion. The only problem is that ‘The Predator’ was supposed to make his PFL MMA debut in early 2024, which no longer seems possible.
There have been theories created by the combat sports community about Ngannou potentially not wanting to return to MMA after earning life-changing money in boxing. With that said, PFL CEO Peter Murray is confident the Cameroonian legend will fight with four-ounce gloves in 2024.
Murray recently joined John Morgan for an interview that was shared on Twitter. During their conversation, the PFL CEO confirmed that Ngannou will fight in MMA this year:
“Yeah, he’s got a big fight coming up now with (Anthony Joshua) right, on the heels of shocking the world and Tyson Fury, so we’re really proud and happy for Francis, but he will be returning to the cage later this year after the Joshua fight, so we’re putting that fight together, and Francis is going to take on both sports, and it’s just been incredible to watch his journey, and more to come there.”
Morgan followed up by asking about a potential situation where Ngannou defeats Joshua and wants to fight in boxing again instead of MMA. Murray responded by saying:
“No, Francis is committed to the PFL. He’s committed to continuing competing in MMA, so we don’t expect that.”
Peter Murray provides detailed update about Francis Ngannou’s affiliation with PFL Africa
Francis Ngannou’s PFL contract featured several ground-breaking clauses, including a stipulation for him to help run an expansion season in Africa. Ngannou’s involvement in PFL Africa would be a historical partnership that could help the overall promotion grow tremendously.
Unfortunately, there haven’t been many updates about PFL Africa since Ngannou signed his contract. During the previously mentioned interview with John Morgan, PFL CEO Peter Murray had this to say about the expansion involving ‘The Predator’:
“In addition, not only will Francis return to the PFL stage in our Super Fights division, but we’ll be making announcements in March on PFL Africa because it is on for 2025 with Francis at the helm as our chairman. So that league, which will be our third official PFL international regional league, PFL Africa, that will launch in 2025 with competition and athletes from different countries across the continent competing to become champion of PFL Africa, so we’re very excited about it.”
“Francis is very excited about it, and just based on Francis, all the adversity that he had to overcome as a professional athlete to leave the continent to become a professional fighter and a champion, now Francis and the PFL will support athletes on the continent. They will not have to leave the continent to compete as professionals, and they’ll have a pathway to become global champions, so we’re really excited about launching that league.”
Before focusing on his PFL commitments, Francis Ngannou has business to take care of on March 8. The former UFC heavyweight champion solidified himself as a heavyweight boxing superstar with his performance against Tyson Fury, and a win against Anthony Joshua would continue to change the world of combat sports.
Check out Peter Murray’s entire interview with John Morgan below:
Spoke with @PFLMMA CEO Peter Murray on his plans in key year for promotion and his vision of "growing the PFL as an overall global powerhouse in the sport."
— John Morgan (@JohnMorgan_MMA) January 8, 2024