A large proportion of the boxing world isn’t giving Francis Ngannou a chance against WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury in their upcoming “Battle of the Baddest” on October 28. But one legend of the ring offered a word of warning ahead of the clash in Riyadh.
Former light-welterweight and welterweight world champion Ricky Hatton knows a thing or two about what it takes to win inside the ring, but he’s also aware of Ngannou’s credentials as an out-and-out knockout artist.
Speaking to MightyTips, Hatton predicted victory for Fury, but warned that the former UFC heavyweight champion is a formidable foe, purely because of the power he’ll carry into the ring on fight night.
“You’ve got one of the most dangerous men in sport in Francis Ngannou,” he said.
“You can see he’s a murderous puncher, massive legs, massive frame on him, and hits really hard. You don’t need anyone to tell Tyson Fury that if Ngannou hits him, he knocks him out. But I don’t think he will.”
Hatton laid out the key advantages for Fury heading into the matchup, but also gave the caveat that, despite his lack of professional boxing experience, Ngannou might only need to land one clean shot to shock the world.
“That’s the big question going into the fight. Tyson has got the punch, the ability, the height, (and) the reach, and Francis Ngannou has never had a professional (boxing) fight in his life,” Hatton explained.
“The question is whether Tyson can keep out the way enough or whether Ngannou can get that one punch in to knock him (out), and that’s what makes it exciting.
“If Tyson turns around and outboxes him we will say we knew that was going to happen. But if (Ngannou) lands that one (punch), we can’t sit down and our jaws (will) hit the floor, because he can punch. He’s a unit!”