Michael Bisping: Francis Ngannou Mishandled UFC Contract Situation

Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping believes that heavyweight Francis Ngannou “mishandled” negotiations with the promotion.

The MMA leader’s heavyweight division is set to move forward without the power and dominance of Ngannou, with Dana White confirming this past weekend that “The Predator” turned down the organization’s final contract offer.

During the announcement, which came in his appearance at the UFC Vegas 67 post-fight press conference, White claimed that Ngannou is looking to make more money by fighting “lesser” opposition outside the Octagon.

Ngannou, however, has long pushed back on claims that his grievances with the promotion surround the financial figures on his deal, which was extended last January following his victory over Ciryl Gane owing to the champions clause.

For the Cameroon native, the freedom to complete his lifelong ambition of entering the boxing ring was a crucial desire that had to feature in a possible new deal with the UFC. With the organization evidently not willing to alter its stance on that matter, Ngannou has walked away.

But according to one of his fellow former titleholders, he “mishandled” the situation.

Bisping Disagrees With Ngannou’s Boxing Stubbornness

During a recent video uploaded to his YouTube channel, former fighter-turned-analyst and UFC color commentator Michael Bisping gave his take on the news that Francis Ngannou has departed the sport’s premier promotion.

After discussing the former heavyweight champion’s options as a free agent, “The Count” noted what he believes to be Ngannou’s desired bout — a boxing match with WBC Heavyweight Champion Tyson Fury.

But in Bisping’s eyes, short-sighted focus on a clash in the ring with “The Gypsy King” could leave Ngannou in a tricky spot.

“The one that Francis Ngannou really wants — and I think this is why he’s willing to walk away from the UFC, which again, I think he’s mishandled that, I really do. I think more eyes will be on him in the mixed martial arts world — it’s that fight with Tyson Fury,” Bisping said. “Remember, after one of Fury’s fights… Francis Ngannou was there.

“A one-off fight with ‘The Gypsy King’ Tyson Fury, one of the best heavyweight boxers we’ve ever seen, would generate a gigantic payday. There’s no doubt about that. Tyson Fury is a massive star,” Bisping added.

“But it’s literally, realistically, going to be a one-and-done. I think — and this is no disrespect to Francis — in mixed martial arts he’s incredibly effective, in boxing he will be incredibly effective, but he’s also gonna be kind of out-skilled… Tyson Fury would, more than likely, nine times out of 10 win that fight… Then what does Francis Ngannou do?”

Having hoped to enter the boxing world prior to becoming a professional mixed martial artist, Ngannou has revived that interest in recent years. It notably picked up pace early last year, when the Cameroonian insisted that the ability to box the likes of Fury and Deontay Wilder was essential if he and the UFC were to come to terms on a new contract.

Do you agree with Michael Bisping’s take on Francis Ngannou’s decision to walk away from the UFC?

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