UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou has stated that he must have a boxing clause in his next contract. There’s also been some social media chatter about a possible mixed rules bout with Tyson Fury, which the boxer and MMA fighter seemed to both be interested in.
Interestingly enough, Top Rank is reportedly also open to the crossover super-fight. Company President Todd DuBoef reportedly told Sports Business Journal that they’re willing to co-promote the event with the UFC.
DuBoef said “I think it’d do really well,” and that Top Rank and UFC both having media rights deals with ESPN could help make it happen.
Top Rank is open to doing a co-promotion with UFC for a @Tyson_Fury-@Francis_Ngannou boxing/MMA crossover fight, per @ToddDuBoef, who told SBJ that negotiations could be made easier by both properties having their media rights tied to @ESPN.— Adam Stern (@A_S12) January 7, 2022
: "I think it'd do really well." pic.twitter.com/tqoTNThHHr
If the UFC is somehow even interested in making this happen, it still seems very unlikely at this point as there are some major hurdles to getting any deal done. This includes the purse split, the ruleset, Dana White and Bob Arum’s tumultuous relationship, and perhaps more pressing, Ngannou’s contract status with the UFC.
The UFC did co-promote with Floyd Mayweather for the crossover bout with Conor McGregor though — and took a sizable chunk of the MMA fighter’s share — so I guess it also isn’t the most impossible thing in the world.