A former world boxing champion will be looking to become the latest competitor to become a two-sport athlete.
Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam revealed in a video that he has signed With ARES FC. Seen hitting the pads, N’Dam (37-5) appears to be ready to take over MMA.
“First signature, I went with ARES, simply because you have to sign with the big guys. ARES is for me the best MMA promotion in France,” N’Dam stated, via Boxing Scene.
The 36-year-old won silver in the 2003 All-Africa Games and gold in the African Championships that year. He made his professional boxing debut in 2004 and primarily competed in France until 2010. In his 24th fight, N’Dam won the WBA International Middleweight Title.
N’Dam saw an increase in competition in 2010 when he won the vacant interim WBA Middleweight Title, beating Avtandil Khurtsidze. Becoming undisputed champion, he ended up losing the belt to Peter Quillin in 2012. N’Dam would continue fighting for gold, losing to David Lemieux for the IBF Middleweight Title before beating Ryota Murata for the WBA Middleweight Title. A rematch a few months later saw Murata beating him for the title.
In his last three bouts, N’Dam is 1-2. He lost to Callum Smith via TKO and Fedor Chudinov in December via unanimous decision.
Ares is the first Afro-European MMA organization in the country. The organization is looking to make a major leap with the signing of a premier talent in N’Dam.
“At ARES, our objective is to develop the talents of Africa, the talents of Europe, and to date, Hassan has a main role in the world of combat sport,” said ARES President Fernand Lopez. “He started boxing back in Cameroon, and he proved to the world that he could go to the highest level. His idea to start MMA is to prove to the world that it can happen at the highest level.”
N’Dam was seen training with Ciryl Gane, a top heavyweight. A middleweight by nature, it is unknown if he will make the transition to another weight.
The 36-year-old has been giving back to the community recently. He repaid a French hospital that cared for his father-in-law with boxing lessons. This was after the father-in-law was going through a tough battle with COVID-19.
Stay tuned to find out who N’Dam will face in his MMA debut.