Eddie Hearn hints at possible Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou fight materializing: “I had lunch with Francis Ngannou”

By Lewis Simpson - April 19, 2023

Eddie Hearn has hinted at a possible boxing bout between Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou materializing.

Eddie Hearn

Ngannou underwent months upon end trying to negotiate a deal with the UFC to stay. However, after failing to agree on terms, the then UFC heavyweight champion made the decision to ultimately part days with the company and test free agency.

According to UFC President Dana White, Ngannou snubbed an offer that would have made him the highest-paid heavyweight in the promotion’s history. Although fans still hope to see Ngannou strap on the UFC gloves down the line, White shut the door on that wish.

Throughout his mixed martial arts career, Ngannou has not been shy in expressing that his first love was boxing, and his life-long goal was to become a world champion in boxing and eventually transition into the sport. Since becoming a free agent, he has been linked with several high-profile boxing bouts with former WBC champion Deontay Wilder and Dillian Whyte, and now British star Joshua is a name being thrown into the hat.

Eddie Hearn talks Francis Ngannou vs. Anthony Joshua super fight

Joshua’s long-time promoter, Hearn, appeared on Ariel Helwani’s The MMA Hour, discussing a potential super fight between Joshua and Ngannou.

Despite being strongly under the impression that Joshua’s skill level would be too high for Ngannou to deal with, Hearn would still give Ngannou a puncher’s chance, given his freakish power.

‘Personally, you cannot in a million years, with Francis Ngannou’s ability in boxing and pedigree in boxing, go in and compete technically, skill-wise — not just with AJ, but with any top 20 heavyweight in the world,’ Hearn said.

‘But in that division, the difference is, what you can do is you could knock someone out. So it doesn’t matter whether Francis fights Anthony Joshua — Tyson Fury, I agree with you, horrible fight for Francis Ngannou because he’d just poke him around.

Other options

‘Deontay Wilder, Dillian Whyte, Derek Chisora, Jermaine Franklin, he has no chance against those guys, other than to be aggressive, trade up, and catch someone clean and take him out.

‘I think that you are right in your statement, people would give fighters a much better chance against AJ having watched that performance. In your world, that translates to Francis Ngannou. And why not? I don’t feel like it’s a fight that’s going to continue the development of Anthony Joshua under his new trainer.

‘I had lunch with Francis Ngannou, you know his story, I was completely gobsmacked by the story of this man.

‘People need to be educated about what that man has been through and his story, I found him fascinating, a lovely guy, I would love to do something.’

Quotes via Daily Mail 

If the bout is to happen, it’s unlikely it’ll be anytime soon. Joshua is coming off a win over Jermaine Franklin at the O2 Arena in London, and the Watford-born revealed he targets December for his next outing.

Ngannou’s next move is still up in the air, with numerous promotions recently revealing they’ve been in talks with the former UFC heavyweight champion.

What do you guys think about the potential super fight? Let us know in the comments!


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