LIVE TODAY: Tyson Fury vs Francis Ngannou Press Conference
Lineal & WBC heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury and lineal heavyweight MMA fighter Francis Ngannou will meet in person THIS THURSDAY, September 7, at the initial press conference for the year’s most talked-about combat sports event.
On Saturday, October 28th, Fury and Ngannou will go head-to-head in a 10-round boxing fight in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This howdown between two dominating figures in their respective sports will inaugurate this year’s Riyadh Season. The fight is set to be conducted under the standard regulations of professional boxing, with ringside judges applying the 10-point must system.
This make-or-break collision of heavyweight giants is brought to you by Queensberry, Top Rank, and Ngannou’s own GIMIK Fight Promotions.
The upcoming Thursday also serves as the starting point for this year’s Riyadh Season, globally recognized as the largest entertainment event, inviting attendees from worldwide to partake in an array of concerts, sports fights, culinary delights, and unique cultural festivities.
Tyson Fury & Francis Ngannou at War on social media
By Charles Brun: Tyson Fury & Francis Ngannou are already at war on social media, hyping up their 10-round combat event on October 28th in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Fury posted a message to Ngannou, telling him that he’s “getting knocked out,” which is likely to come true unless he carries him in the same way Floyd Mayweather Jr carried former UFC champion Conor McGregor in their circus-level event in 2017.
Ngannou, former UFC heavyweight champion, replied back to Fury, showing a picture of him flat on his back, out cold, receiving a count by the referee Jack Reiss in the twelfth round of his first fight with Deontay Wilder in 2018. It was an odd situation.
Many fans questioned why Reiss gave a count in the first place to Fury because he was clearly unconscious, and the fight should have been stopped on the spot.
Sadly, Fury’s highly criticized fight with Ngannou could count as a professional bout, as it’s not an exhibition match. It shouldn’t count because it’s not fair to have an 0-0 novice fighting a world champion, and it doesn’t matter that Tyson’s WBC belt isn’t on the line.
Boxing fans feel that Fury should have fought IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk, and if not him, then one of these killers: Arslanbek Makhmudov, Martin Bakole, or Frank Sanchez,
Those fighters would have gladly accepted a fight with Fury if offered. Instead, Fury chose an easy mark, fighting an 0-0 guy, an aging one at that, with no boxing experience, and the only thing going for him is he’s popular with the MMA fans.
Fury vowing to KO Ngannou
“You’re getting it, you big dosser. You’re getting knocked out,” said Tyson Fury on social media today, sending a message to Francis Ngannou ahead of their fight on PPV on October 28th.
“It’s just an event, isn’t it? That’s what it is. It’s not meaningful. It’s a combat sports razzmatazz event,” said Gareth A. Davies to iFL TV about the Fury vs. Ngannou fight.
“They’re calling it ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet,’ but it’s still the Game of Thrones going on. Of course, the fight we all want to see is Fury against Usyk, but the fact that Queensberry and Top Rank announced it as well, so they’re involved, have gone with Gimmick Promotions.
This fight is definitely not for the ‘Baddest Man the Planet.’ Ngannou is getting old at 36, and no longer fights in the UFC, and even if he did, he likely wouldn’t be a champion.
You can argue that Fury is running scared of IBF/WBA/WBO champion Oleksandr Usyk, so he’s not the best in the heavyweight. He’s just some guy that beat Deontay Wilder, a washed-up Wladimir Klitschko, and a bunch of fringe-level guys like Derek Chisora, Dillian Whyte & Otto Wallin.
“It’s more likely we’re going to see Usyk and Fury early next year over there because the Saudi government will want it. There’s no question about that,” said Davies.
Fury-Ngannou: Biggest fight on earth?
“They want the biggest fight on Earth, and that is the biggest fight. So you have much disappointment tinged with Fury’s fighting Ngannou; he should have fought Usyk already,” Gareth said. “They should have just fought already.
“I’d like to see Fury with Frank Sanchez or Arslanbek Makhmudov this year, but he wants to fight in Ngannou. They want to do different events; they want to do different things. You can’t begrudge him that.
“If you don’t want to watch it, don’t watch it, but I think a lot of people will still watch it, and it’s garnered a lot of traction just in the first two or three hours that it’s been announced.
“There’s no way WBC belt can be on the line. That’s just not viable. If it is, it’s a disgrace. They’ve both threatened in their press release quotes today to go for it. If Fury doesn’t school Ngannou, I’ll be very, very surprised.
“They built it, and they say it’s ‘the Baddest Man on the Planet’ with the best chin in heavyweight boxing, Fury against the biggest punch in Francis Ngannou. They’re looking at those as their selling points.
Tyson to make huge money
“No, it’s not no knockdowns, and it’s an exhibition in a sense, but they’re going for it. It’s an exhibition of combat sports,” said Gareth.
Shouldn’t Fury vs. Ngannou be an exhibition? What commission is sanctioning this? It doesn’t matter that Fury’ss WBC heavyweight title isn’t on the line.
It’s still a fight between a world champion and a fighter making his debut in the sport. Mismatches of that kind shouldn’t be sanctioned, as it’s potentially dangerous.
For all intents and purposes, Ngannou might as well be a golfer or a tennis player because he has the same amount of experience in boxing as any athlete would from those sports if they walked into a ring with a world champion.
If Ngannou is seriously hurt in this fight, there’s going to be a considerable backlash, with fans coming down hard on the event organizers and whoever sanctioned this monstrosity.
“It’s an MMA fighter, the former UFC heavyweight champion, who’s now left the UFC, who didn’t earn a lot, who probably earn, I don’t know, but I’m guessing he’s probably going to earn 10 million bucks for this or somewhere in that region,” said Davies.
“Fury is probably earning a very large sum as well. I don’t know what the sum is, by the way, but you know Fury ought to be able just to school him in a boxing match, and that’s what I think will happen.”
Eddie Hearn says he thinks Fury is getting $40-50 million for the Ngannou fight, and if Ngannou is getting $10 million, there’s little chance the Saudis are going to turn a profit for the money they’re putting out.
“He has until December for a mandatory,” Gareth said about Fury’s WBC mandatory requirements. “It’s a meaningless fight in the boxing world, but it’s a combat sporting event. It’s part of the modern circus; it’s part of what’s going on.”
Will Fury make a mandatory defense of his WBC title by December? It’s highly doubtful, which means if/when he does get around to defending it in 2024, it’ll have been two years since he made his last one from April 2022 against Dillian Whyte.
That’s not exactly fair to the WBC mandatory waiting for a title shot, is it? That fighter is being forced to put his career on hold for two years just so Fury can go pick up a bag against a non-boxer in Saudi Arabia. It’s pathetic.
“But Muhammad Ali fought [Japanese professional wrestler Antonio] Inoki in Japan [on June 26th, 1976]. Having said that, it was very late in his career and not during his reign as a world champ,” Davies said.
Muhammad Ali was at the tail-end of his career when he fought Antonio Inoki in 1976, so his situation was completely different from Fury’s.
Fury fighting the wrong guy
“Let me make this clear. I’d much rather, like every boxing fan out there and every boxing observer, see him [Fury] fighting Usyk and then Joshua or Joshua and Usyk,” said Gareth. “Those are the two opponents I would like to see Tyson Fury in with. This [Fury vs. Ngannou] is not meaningful in that sense.
“It’s meaningful in terms of being an event and, as you say, a ‘game changer’ that they’ve signed a deal with Riyadh Season. That’s a game changer, definitely, because it means that two promotional bodies from Saudi Arabia are now involved in boxing, and you could just see them coming together at the apex for that Undisputed title next year.
“Maybe there is a plan in place that Eddie Hearn maybe knew about that Oleksandr Usyk’s people, Alex Krassyuk knew about, that Frank Warren and Bob Arum knew about the whole time, that they knew that this build was happening. It all makes sense; it all fits together.
“A lot of people will be unhappy with Tyson Fury fighting Ngannou, but it’s promotional; it’s a really big event,” said Davies.
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