New PFL Champ Issues Bold Challenge to Francis Ngannou Despite 50-Pound Weight Difference

New PFL Champ Issues Bold Challenge to Francis Ngannou Despite 50-Pound Weight Difference

Francis Ngannou is a highly sought-after fighter in both MMA and possibly boxing.

Despite losing to Tyson Fury, he gained recognition, a top 10 ranking with the WBC, respect from boxing fans, and a significant fee that even surpasses Conor McGregor's earnings. Ngannou now has the opportunity for lucrative boxing matches, potentially facing opponents like Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. However, he is currently signed to PFL MMA, and they expect him to continue fighting in their SmartCage.Tyson Fury vs Francis Ngannou press conference, PK, Pressekonferenz Tyson Fury vs Francis Ngannou kick off press conference held at Here at Outernet Charing Cross Road London uk 7.9.2023 Editorial Use Only, Credit:Dean Fardell Avalon PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxUKxFRAxUSA xAvalonx 0803632017

In the world of MMA, finding exciting matchups for Ngannou, excluding UFC opponents, is a bit challenging. The heavyweight division, especially outside the UFC, lacks depth, with few large and athletic fighters choosing MMA over more financially rewarding options like the NFL.

Recently, Impa Kasanganay, the newly crowned PFL MMA light heavyweight million-dollar season winner, expressed his desire to fight Ngannou. Despite being remembered for a highlight reel knockout loss in the UFC, Kasanganay's callout could be financially rewarding. Ngannou's special deal with the PFL ensures a minimum purse of $2 million for any opponent, making it a lucrative opportunity for fighters like Kasanganay.

Kasanganay, in an interview with MMA Junkie, didn't emphasize the significant payday but rather earnestly explained his desire to be the best, stating that facing a much heavier opponent like Ngannou aligns with his goal of becoming the best in the sport.

“I want him because he’s great,” he said. “I’m not here to test myself or just try it out. I’m here to claim a victory, too. If you really want to be the best to ever do it, you have to show it.”

“Yes, he’s a powerhouse and all that, but I don’t care,” continued Kasanganay. “I really, really want Francis because a lot of people run from him. He’s trying to find fights, I’ll go up to heavyweight. The biggest I’ve been is 245. I’ll beat him if I’m 215. I don’t care. I’m not here to play around. I trust the trainers I have. I trust the coaches I have, and I’m just going to keep running through somebody’s face over and over again until I claim that victory.

“PFL, you don’t have to look around, you know where to find me. You know I’m going to show up and say yes. Let’s do it on the inaugural PFL Africa card with us. Let’s set it off. … Let’s bring greatness back to the continent. I’m not here to play around. I respect Francis and I think he’s doing great work, and that’s where warriors go. They say the warrior’s greatest reward is the next battle, so that’s what I want.”



We admire Kasanganay's boldness in making this callout, but I have reservations about it benefiting him in the long run. While it could be intriguing to witness him facing Ngannou and observing the outcome, Ngannou should focus on promoting himself as the 'baddest individual on the planet.' A victory over a 205-pounder, especially one remembered more for being knocked out than for winning at the PFL championships, doesn't contribute much to Ngannou's legacy.

Moreover, if Ngannou were to lose (stranger things have happened in sports), it could be a significant setback for him. Losing to a fighter in a lower weight class may be perceived as a game-changing moment in his career.


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