Rising heavyweight contender Francis Ngannou was scheduled to face former champion Junior Dos Santos at UFC 215 earlier this month, but the bout was scrapped after Dos Santos was flagged by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) for a potential anti-doping violation.
Now, Ngannou is eyeing a fight with either top contender Alistair Overeem, or heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic. Not only does “The Predator” feel as if he would ‘surprise’ both men, but he also predicted that he’d knock out Miocic if they were to fight:
“I already know everything they’re able to do,” Ngannou told ESPN of potential opponents Miocic and Overeem. “Everyone knows all of their skills. They don’t know mine. They’re still discovering mine. I’m bringing a surprise in every fight. I’ve never had the opportunity to show my whole game yet.
“I knock Stipe out when we fight. I think under three rounds, I knock him out.”
As far as which of the two he expects to fight next, Ngannou said it’s ‘not clear’ right now, although he’s hoping to fight in December:
“It’s not clear right now,” Ngannou said. “I want Stipe, but they are also talking about Overeem. I’ll probably fight either [UFC 218] on Dec. 2 in Detroit or [UFC 219] on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas.
“I’d prefer to fight in Detroit just because it’s 28 days sooner,” he said. “I had a fight this month and it didn’t happen, so I’m just waiting. It sucks.”
Miocic hasn’t competed since stopping Dos Santos last May, but he recently said that he’s anticipating a return in December or January, so perhaps Ngannou could indeed be the next title challenger.
Since entering the UFC in Dec. 2015, “The Predator” has picked up five consecutive victories, with all five of them coming by way of stoppage. He most recently knocked out Andrei Arlovski last January.
Who would you like to see Ngannou fight next?