UFC 270 proved to be a great night for Francis “The Predator” Ngannou, who successfully defended his title against former teammate Ciryl Gane.
Dropping the first two rounds, Ngannou was put under pressure to rally back and retain his throne. And he’s done just that, taking down his opponent and controlling him on the canvas throughout the final 15 minutes.
With Gane beaten, it’s evident that Ngannou is the ‘Baddest Man on the Planet’ – or is he?
For multiple years, former light-heavyweight King Jon Jones has teased a move to heavyweight, claiming that his tools mixed with added weight would carry him to the throne. Though he chose to remain focused on his division, the last two years have seen him seemingly make the switch.
Following a razor-thin decision win against Dominick Reyes in February 2020, Jones took some time away from the spotlight. Posts on social media just months later showed a much bulkier man than we’re used to seeing, and before we knew it, he had vacated his title.
Now focused on being a true heavyweight, 2022 may be the year we see Jones return to the cage. And as a two-time champion who once sat atop the pound-for-pound rankings, he believes he’s deserving of a crack at Ngannou. One man disagrees, however.
UFC President Dana White has remained skeptical when it comes to the return of “Bones”, not knowing if he’s entirely serious about venturing to heavyweight.
“I don’t feel confident saying that Jon Jones is next,” explained White to ESPN. “Not because I think he’s unreliable, it’s because I honestly don’t know what Jon Jones wants to do next.”
“Maybe he doesn’t fight at heavyweight. Maybe he goes back and tries to regain the light heavyweight championship. I honestly don’t know the answer to that question”
Jones himself gave his thoughts on a fight with Ngannou, claiming he’s fought tougher competition.
“I think it would be a really exciting fight, for sure,” Jones said. “Personally, I feel like I’ve fought guys that are a lot tougher, a lot more skilled and versatile. Better conditioned. But as far as just excitement for the fans, the general public? Yeah, that’s gonna be a big fight.”
Per sportsbook Cloudbet, the odds see Ngannou as the current favorite against Jones, should the fight be confirmed.
Cash your bets while you can; the odds will only get thinner.