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Bareknuckle fighter weary of Francis Ngannou death punch — ‘He’s gonna kill somebody’

UFC 218: Overeem v Ngannou Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

If reigning UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou was able to buy his freedom with a championship victory at UFC 270 — as suggested — then “The Predator” will have plenty of options to continue his combat sports career outside the Octagon.

Including the new-look BKFC.

But former UFC featherweight-turned-bareknuckle boxer Chad Mendes believes Ngannou — who previously set a power-punching record at the UFC Performance Institute — is a dangerous fit for gloveless combat and runs the risk of killing someone.

“I tell you what, I would not want to be anywhere near that dude bare-knuckle,” Mendes said in an interview with Full Mount (transcribed by MMA Junkie). “Could you imagine that dude hitting you in the face bare-knuckle? He’s gonna kill somebody.”

Ngannou, who may or may not be 50 years old, has been mired in a contract dispute with UFC over the last several months. Regardless of how that plays out, “The Predator” still needs to recover from knee surgery to repair an injury suffered ahead of UFC 270.

It also stands to reason that a free-and-clear Ngannou will attempt to capitalize on interest from heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury, who sounds sincere in his desire to box the Cameroonian at some point in 2023, assuming he gets past this upcoming title fight.

Still lots of missing pieces to this heavyweight puzzle.