Frustrated Francis Ngannou Says he Should Have Interim Belt “Around my Waist”
By FCF Staff
Leading up to UFC 249, Jairzinho Rozenstruik and Francis Ngannou called for the UFC to put an interim title up for their heavyweight clash. Now, not long removed from his KO win on Saturday, Ngannou’s still not happy about the fact the promotion turned them down.
Due to the fact the third fight between Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier still has not been booked, Ngannou and Rozenstruik argued that an interim belt should have been tied to their fight. Miocic reclaimed the heavyweight title last August by stopping Cormier, but the champion has said he likely won’t fight again until fall.
Ngannou (15-3) proceeded to KO Rozenstruik in just 20 seconds on Saturday. While speaking to MMA Fighting since then, the contender had this to say, about the fact he’s not holding an interim belt.
“That’s my frustration right now,” Ngannou said. “Saturday night after the fight, after I won, I watched the [Justin] Gaethje and [Tony] Ferguson fight. It was an amazing fight. Incredible. Then I saw Justin Gaethje get the belt and we were asking them for the title fight in comparison with Justin Gaethje also having an interim title fight on three first-round knockouts, same as me as a heavyweight. Also knowing what is going on in the heavyweight division, we asked for the interim title on the line. But the UFC denied it.
“I did not understand why. Saturday night, it was very frustrating. I was mad about it. I should be by myself with a belt around my waist. I don’t deserve it? Is that what they meant? What was the meaning of that exactly? What would it take them to do something like that? That was unfortunate.”
Lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov last defended his title in September, by submitting Dustin Poirier, More recently the undefeated fighter has said he’ll be ready to fight again in July.