Jon Jones: “I’ll Handle Francis Ngannou at Heavyweight”

Jon Jones is suddenly interested in fighting at heavyweight. We have his former opponent Ovince Saint Preux to thank after he made his heavyweight debut against Ben Rothwell. Now he is interested in taking a fight against Francis Ngannou. Yes, that Ngannou with the big fists who knocks everybody out.

In short, Jones has beaten everybody of note at light-heavyweight. Yes, his most recent win over Dominick Reyes was controversial but there is a feeling that he is unmotivated. A run at heavyweight makes sense at this stage of his career. If he wants his legacy as an all-time great to stand out, then it’s what he has to do.

However, Ngannou is arguably the most dangerous fighter he could take on right now. The Cameroonian knocks out everybody with a touch. Just ask Jairzinho Rosenstruik, Cain Velasquez, Junior Dos Santos, and Curtis Blaydes. His power is a major problem. Can Jones handle it?

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Power

Jones thinks that Ngannou’s problem wouldn’t be a problem. He says that his shots are too slow for him to worry. The big question is whether he could assert the same level of octagon control over arguably the most athletic heavyweight on the roster. After tweeting about his desire to fight at heavyweight, he went back and forth with Ngannou. He denied his effectiveness and wrote:

Seemed so real Francis, all that power means nothing when your hay makers are too slow. I’m not most my friend

In short, that’s a brave man.

Technical

Jones believes that he has fought quicker and more technical strikers than Ngannou in the past. He named Thiago Santos as one such fighter. However, it’s also worth mentioning that Santos has fought as low as a welterweight. Meanwhile, Ngannou cuts weight to get to the heavyweight limit of 265lbs. Can he handle that strength and power? He got tagged by Dominick Reyes. In sum, if he lets Ngannou hit him like that it will be lights out. Jones wrote:

“Who would you guys consider the quicker and more technical striker Thiago Santos or Francis? If you guys think I wouldn’t take this fight you’re insane. I have absolutely nothing else to prove as a light heavyweight. I’d love that big money fight right around now. Send the deal.”

 

Accepted

Needless to say, Ngannou accepts Jones’ challenge. He wants a title shot but this would be just as good. There’s also a good chance there would be an interim title involved. The UFC would love to see Jones as their heavyweight champion but Ngannou is a true powerhouse. The Cameroonian wrote:

“If you think you can handle my technique level that’s fine but I agree with you that you don’t have anything to prove in LHW division and that this should be for bags.”

This would be such a fascinating fight. Can Jones handle Ngannou like he does everybody else, or will ‘The Predator’ just swat him aside like a fly? On recent form, you have to favor Ngannou but Jones is one of the best in the business.

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