Curtis Blaydes thinks the UFC should allow Francis Ngannou to box.
Ngannou and the UFC have been at odds as of late. “The Predator” is the reigning UFC Heavyweight Champion, who recently competed in the final fight of his deal. With that said, the champion’s clause is now in effect but Ngannou seems content with sitting on the sidelines unless he’s given a satisfactory offer.
Ngannou’s issue lies with both fighter pay and being labeled an independent contractor despite being restricted in what opportunities he can pursue.
During an episode of MMAFighting‘s The Fighter vs. The Writer, Curtis Blaydes said he feels the UFC should give Francis Ngannou the same treatment that was given to Conor McGregor.
“I think that’s the crux of the issue. You opened the door when you let [Conor] McGregor do it. I don’t see a real reason why Francis shouldn’t be allowed to do it. I cannot think of a legit reason, because McGregor was able to do it.”
Blaydes went on to say that even if there is a risk of Ngannou injuring himself in a boxing match with someone like Tyson Fury, he said those occurrences can happen in training.
“Yeah, there’s a risk of an injury, but OK, injuries can happen whenever. They can happen at practices. That’s not a good enough reason, especially when he can potentially earn [a lot for both sides], even if it’s only $5 million. That’s a lot of money. I don’t blame Francis wanting to take the boxing match. I cannot blame him.”
Ngannou last competed back in January. He defeated Ciryl Gane in a title unification bout via unanimous decision. The bout headlined UFC 270 inside the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
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