Sorry, Francis Ngannou — Derrick Lewis just re-signed with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Indeed, “Black Beast” isn’t going anywhere.
The popular UFC Heavyweight hasn’t had the best luck over the past few years, going 2-4 after earning himself a shot at the interim heavyweight title in 2021. The memory of three bad losses in a row haunted “The Black Beast” coming into UFC 291, where he snapped the losing streak with an awesome flying knee knockout of Marcos Rogerio de Lima (watch it here).
After the win, Lewis celebrated in style: he dropped his pants, threw the D-Generation X “suck it” symbol and then did a little dance (see it). On a more serious note, he told Joe Rogan that the win was the last fight on his current UFC contract.
With Ngannou and Professional Fighters League (PFL) looking for a legitimate Heavyweight contender to face “The Predator” in 2024, there were questions as to whether Lewis would stick around. UFC clearly liked Lewis, but did the promotion like him enough to pay him more than he’d get to fight Ngannou, especially with his iffy record of late?
The answer seems to be, “Yes.” During a Power Slap press conference, UFC President, Dana White, said he doesn’t just like Lewis ... he loves him.
“Listen, I love Derrick. Personally and professionally love the guy,” he said. “So yes [we’ll be re-signing him].”
As White said this, UFC Executive Vice President and Chief Business Officer, Hunter Campbell, interjected from the sidelines saying a deal was already done.
So there you go. Those hoping to see Lewis vs. Ngannou 2 battle after their terrible non-fight in 2018 may be disappointed. But, for those who want to see “The Black Beast” knockout some guy in the lower end of the Top 15 every few months?