Why did Francis Ngannou leave UFC?


FRANCIS NGANNOU will make his professional boxing debut against undefeated WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.

The former UFC star will face the Gyspy King in an epic 10-round showcase in Saudi Arabia on Saturday night.



It will be the first time Ngannou will be in combat action since he left the UFC back in January.

But why did the MMA star leave the promotion?

Why did Francis Ngannou leave UFC?

Former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou claims that wanting “freedom” – not money – was the reason behind the MMA star leaving the UFC.

Speaking on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Hour show in January 2023, Ngannou said he rejected a deal from the UFC to preserve his “freedom”.


The Cameroonian powerhouse explained: “It doesn’t matter how much [money] is in that contract, I am not free.

“I have no power. I hand all the power over to you guys [the UFC] and I don’t want that to happen.

“I really wished it could work out, I always saw myself in the UFC. But it’s a matter of principle. Money is a part of it but it’s not all about money.”

The 37-year-old claims his requests to the UFC to provide health insurance for all its fighters were rejected during contract negotiations, as well as his call for athletes to have their own sponsorship deals.

Ngannou said: “I wanted them [the UFC] to put these things in consideration, they said no.

“I can pay my health insurance but some of the fighters can’t.

“This is very important, dignity and freedom. I need freedom and to control my destiny, not have people control it for me.”

Speaking after UFC Vegas 67, president Dana White spoke on Ngannou’s departure, he said: “We offered Ngannou a deal that would make him the highest-paid heavyweight of all time

“He turned it down. We’re gonna release him from his contract. He can go and do whatever he wants.”

Ngannou held the UFC heavyweight title for nearly two years before he was stripped of it following his departure from the promotion.

When was Francis Ngannou’s last fight in the UFC?

Francis Ngannou’s last fight in the UFC was against Ciryl Gane back at UFC 270 on January 23rd, 2022.

The Cameroonian successfully defended his heavyweight title on the night after winning by unanimous decision.

Ngannou enjoyed a phenomenal career in the UFC, winning 17 fights and losing on just three occasions.

Ngannou’s UFC record:

  • 12 wins by knockout.
  • Four wins by submission.
  • One win by decision.
  • Three losses by decision.

When is Tyson Fury vs Francis Ngannou?

  • Tyson Fury vs Francis Ngannou will take place on Saturday, October 28.
  • The bout will take place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
  • Expect ring-walks to get going from around 10pm UK time.
  • The fight will be a 10-round professional fight but Fury’s WBC belt will NOT be on the line.
  • Exhibition rules will NOT be in place.

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