It took Francis Ngannou just 71 seconds to demolish former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos in Minneapolis last night, an impressive feat that put the Cameroonian native up to three wins in a row since he started 2018 with a two fight losing skid. That had everyone up to UFC president Dana White questioning whether they’d been too quick to discuss Ngannou as a future champ and superstar. But those questions seemed answered at this point and Ngannou now wants another shot at heavyweight gold.
He was just as fast with his demands as with his fists. He didn’t even wait til the post-fight interview to demand things, instead going cageside and yelling at Dana White that he deserved it.
”Yeah, we’ll talk,” White replied from cageside. “These guys still have to fight. Still got to have Cormier and Stipe fight. We’ll see what happens after that. Who wins. What if they get hurt? Or whatever happens. And we’ll go from there.”
Those two fight August 17th at UFC 241, and a lot could happen between now and then.
”I hope the UFC gonna realize that I deserve the title shot right now,” Ngannou said on the mic. “I deserve the winner of DC and Stipe ... I want the title shot back. I need my place in the division. I need some respect. I deserve it!”
After his destruction of dos Santos, it’s hard to argue, although some tried at the post fight press conference. In response to a reporter’s question about surviving the wresting of Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic, Ngannou shrugged.
After his KO win, @francis_ngannou went straight to boss @danawhite #UFCMinneapolis pic.twitter.com/gDa3PDgxbT— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) June 30, 2019
”I don’t need to convince people, I just got to go out and fight,” he said. “How do I convince people that I’m going to beat Junior tonight? The only thing that convince people is the result.”
”Do I deserve the title shot or not? I think the answer is yes,” he said. “Then what happen if someone gets injury? I don’t know, I just want that they give me the shot, the title contract, and we have time to prepare and put it all together. And if ‘DC’ wins and decides to retire, the division will not stay without a champion. They still have to figure out something and I’ll be head of the line. So I’m not concerned about that.”
Ngannou credited his recent stellar performances to ‘having fun’ again, admitting he wasn’t even having fun at a certain point before turning things around and getting back to enjoying the sport
”The most important is to go out and do what you’re going to do,” he said. “Because there’s nothing more frustrating and painful than getting out into the Octagon and feeling like you didn’t give it your all. I think that’s the biggest loss ever.”