Streaking UFC heavyweight contender Francis Ngannou has no problem with Daniel Cormier wanting to avenge his loss to Stipe Miocic, so long as the trilogy bout takes place after ‘The Predator’ secures his own championship rematch with Miocic.
Ngannou has knocked his last three opponents out in the first round, notching stoppage victories over Curtis Blaydes and former heavyweight champions Junior dos Santos and Cain Velasquez, which is why the Cameroonian knockout artist feels he’s more deserving of the next title shot.
“My concern is not about Daniel Cormier having a trilogy,” Ngannou said in a recent interview with MMA Fighting’s Damon Martin. “They can have a trilogy or a four-ogy or a five-ogy, whatever they want to. My concern is just about my turn, about my title fight. I can fight Stipe and then the fight after [can be the trilogy] I don’t have no problem with that. My only problem is me fighting for the title. I deserve it.
“I deserve it based on my last three performances. I’m just expecting the title shot. Then whatever happens between DC and Stipe, if they decide to solve it, I don’t have a problem with that. I will be excited to see that trilogy but right now I have to fight for the title, which makes sense.”
Ngannou, who dropped a unanimous decision to Miocic back in 2018, credited ‘DC’ and Miocic for putting on a fantastic fight at UFC 241.
“I was very impressed. I did not expect that fight to go that way,” Ngannou said. “That impressed me, both of them. That was a very, very good fight. It was very exciting to watch. As I said, it made me proud of my division because you feel like you are really challenging people. The challenge is high so it makes you more excited.
“I knew everything could happen at any moment. Even though they were pushing each other, this is heavyweight and anything can happen at any moment. Something like that we expect. Actually when [Stipe] started setting up the uppercut to the body, I felt like something was going to happen. DC was feeling it. He was hurt. It’s breaking him down.”
Speaking of a possible rematch with Miocic, Ngannou said he would never make the same mistake of underestimating the two-time heavyweight champ.
“The biggest difference now is that I have increased my experience and I understand more about the fighting game. My biggest change would be not to underestimate Stipe as I did before,” Ngannou said. “The difference would be how to prepare to fight and then how to [condition] my body in training camp as a challenger. How to set up everything compared to the first time.
“Once again, the first time was a mess. I didn’t know what I was doing there. It helped me to understand a lot of things. It helped me to learn. It helped to understand a lot of things. To know how things work.”
Given Ngannou’s somewhat turbulent relationship with Dana White, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the UFC book Miocic vs. Cormier III over Miocic vs. Ngannou II. Expect the UFC to make an official fight announcement in the coming weeks.