It was well-known that when the heavyweight champion entered his UFC 270 title defense against Ciryl Gane, it was the last fight of his deal. Since then, he has continued to be vocal about his displeasure with his current contract.
Ngannou’s friend and UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya, who just re-signed with the UFC, says the promotion needs to deal with the heavyweight champ better, and he is optimistic that they will.
“I don’t know this narrative of, oh, they just gave me a new deal because of what was happening with Francis,” Adesanya said after UFC 271. “I’m like, no, my dealings with the UFC don’t need to be brought forth because every case is different. With Francis’ case, he needed to bring that forward because it was atrocious, and I respect him for that. But like I said, this is a first step.”
Israel Adesanya believes the UFC and Francis Ngannou will eventually strike a deal to keep the heavyweight champion in the Las Vegas-based promotion. The hope for Adesanya is his contract and that of other big names will lift the minimum pay for the debuting fighters as well. The middleweight champ wants to see no UFC fighter need to have another job.
“Dana already said they had dinner with [Ngannou] before he went back to Cameroon; they gonna have dinner when they come back,” Adesanya said. “So yeah, people make mistakes. The UFC’s filled with humans. Humans make mistakes. Human error. But we can always amend those mistakes. Honestly, rising tides lifts all the ships. And with this, I feel like it’s the first step in this trickle-down effect to the rest of the fighters and lifting everyone up.”
As of right now, there is no talk on when exactly Francis Ngannou and the UFC will meet again but Israel Adesanya is hoping a deal gets made.
Do you think Francis Ngannou re-signs with the UFC?