UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou came into his UFC 270 matchup with Ciryl Gane suffering from multiple knee injuries.
Ngannou earned a unanimous decision victory over Gane in a fight that arguably didn’t live up to the hype. But, Ngannou was able to show off his vastly improved grappling and won the fight mostly due to his wrestling and ground control.
As mentioned by the commentary team as Ngannou made his walk to the octagon, the heavyweight champion was seen with multiple knee guards on both of his knees entering the cage. This was an unusual site and many believe he could’ve suffered a leg injury during his camp.
During his UFC 270 octagon interview, Ngannou revealed the challenges he went through during his preparation for the fight.
Francis Ngannou Hurt His MCL, ACL Weeks Before UFC 270
“It’s been a really tough training camp,” Ngannou said. “A lot of s**t. Three weeks ago, I tore my MCL completely and hurt my ACL and other stuff. I wanted to pull out of this fight, but I couldn’t see myself retreating from this fight. It was an opportunity for me to make a statement.”
It’s unclear how Ngannou suffered the knee injury, but rumors have swirled over the past few days that he might’ve hurt himself in camp. He hadn’t alluded to any injuries during fight week and seemed fully prepared and motivated for the bout physically and mentally.
Ngannou earned the title against Stipe Miocic at UFC 260 last year. He was originally expected to face Jon Jones for his first title defense, but negotiations never materialized.
Ngannou and the UFC haven’t seen eye-to-eye in recent months, and the heavyweight champion may be sidelined for a while with his knee issues. For now, it remains to be seen what could be next for him in his UFC tenure.
What did you think of Francis Ngannou’s performance at UFC 270?