Francis Ngannou praises Jon Jones for his “great performance” at UFC 285, expresses disappointment that a fight with ‘Bones’ will likely “never happen now”

By Jeffrey Walter - March 6, 2023

Francis Ngannou has praised Jon Jones for his great performance at UFC 285 but is admittedly disappointed that they will never fight.

Francis Ngannou, Jon Jones, UFC, UFC 285

Jones (27-1 MMA) captured the UFC’s vacant heavyweight title this past Saturday night in Las Vegas, submitting former interim title holder Ciryl Gane (11-2 MMA) in the very first round (see that here).

Francis Ngannou (17-3 MMA), the UFC’s former heavyweight kingpin who was released by the promotion following failed contract negotiations, recently weighed in on Jon’s “great performance” in a video posted to his YouTube channel.

“I knew that if Jon Jones shows up in a good space mentally, not like his last two fights, he’s going to prevail in this fight, but I didn’t see this fight going this short,” Ngannou said (h/t MMAJunkie). “I think this fight could have been longer. I was surprised, though. I was surprised the way that the fight ended. And I think even seeing Ciryl’s reaction, he was surprised as well because he wasn’t even defending. He wasn’t thinking that a submission could come from where he was.”

Francis Ngannou continued:

“That was quite a great performance from Jones. Not very surprising, because I knew that if I could out-wrestle Ciryl, Jon would be another story. He would have a hard night if Jon could lay in on him, but what I did notice is that Jon was rushing. Jon didn’t want to give him space, because I think he was afraid of something. Maybe he’d get exhausted at some point, not be able to grab him, so he was chasing him from the first minute to grab him. It worked out pretty good, but it tells me something like he wasn’t very confident, he was rushing, which is good for him.”

Francis Ngannou, Dana White, UFC

(via Zuffa LLC)

Prior to Saturday’s blockbuster pay-per-view event, UFC President Dana White confirmed that there was no chance of Francis Ngannou ever fighting for the promotion again. With that, ‘The Predator’ admits he is a bit disappointed that he will likely never get the chance to lock horns with ‘Bones’.

“Fun fight, a fight I’d like to have but unfortunately, we are not there. That fight didn’t happen, and probably will never happen now that he’s on a long, very long contract with the UFC. So, that’s not happening anymore.”

How do you think a fight between Jon Jones and Francis Ngannou would have played out? Share your thoughts in the comment section Penn Nation!


Francis Ngannou Jon Jones UFC UFC 285