‘You Never Know’: Francis Ngannou’s Coach Aiming For Early 2022 For Next Fight
Time is ticking for 2021 and UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou has yet to be booked.
Ngannou’s coach Eric Nicksick said he’s aiming to get Ngannou (16-3) back in the octagon for early 2022, hopefully.
“I’m hoping, and that’s what we’ve been kicking around. We’ve been hearing January,” Nicksick said on The MMA Hour. “But you never know, man. Like, the UFC’s always willing to throw you a curveball and then, ‘Oh, guess what? You’re fighting Jon Jones now.’”
Ngannou hasn’t fought since knocking out Stipe Miocic just less than a minute into the second round of the heavyweight title fight.
UFC President Dana White told Miocic he could rematch with Ngannou where the winner would face Jones.
That didn’t happen. Ngannou versus Derrick Lewis was then in talks for UFC 265, but that didn’t happen either, and in came Ciryl Gane.
Miocic, a former champion, has said he wishes he had a chance to win his belt back.
Now it’s unclear when Ngannou, Miocic and Jones will fight for sure.
“…I think that’s the fight [with Jones] to make,” Nicksick said. “… in my mind I feel that Jon Jones is the pound-for-pound GOAT. And as a coach and as a competitor, I want to compete against the best.”
Ngannou previously told GQ, after UFC 265, “sometimes I’m not even sure if I’m really the champ or not. It’s really confusing.”
Nicksick said it’s all a business, but Ngannou is “hungry” and “motivated.”