REPORTS: UFC Not Looking to Entertain Jon Jones-Instead Planning on Francis Ngannou vs Derrick Lewis

Published 04/05/2021, 1:20 PM EDT
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – JUNE 28: Francis Ngannou of Cameroon poses on the scale during the UFC Fight Night weigh-in at the Target Center on June 28, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Ever since Francis Ngannou won the championship, there has been a tremendous amount of speculation about his next opponent.

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Even before the fight, White had announced that the winner of the match will face former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Jon Jones.

The fight looked like a lock till discussions between Jones and the UFC came to a standstill. Jones went on a tweeting spree to claim that he needed to be paid more money than the UFC had decided.

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That demand from Jones has seemingly put a stop to all negotiations that would have led to a truly blockbuster fight, and now the question remains, who will face the UFC Heavyweight Champion and when.

A Francis Ngannou vs Derrick Lewis fight on the cards?

Jones and White have been on different wavelengths lately, prompting the UFC President to move on to the next best thing. Ariel Helwani took to social media to stir the pot and offer fans an update about Ngannou’s hotly debated return to the octagon with gold around his waist.

He wrote, “UFC has kicked the tires on Francis Ngannou x Derrick Lewis on June 12, sources say. However, the timing doesn’t work for Ngannou (and I don’t blame him; he just won the belt). Bigger story here, IMO, is, at least for now, they don’t seem keen on waiting around for Jones.”

According to Ariel, a fight between Ngannou and Derrick Lewis now seems to be a real possibility. Although a fight between Jones and Ngannou would have been an absolute banger, the price that ‘Bones’ cited for the fight forced the UFC to take their offer elsewhere.

“Since 6/12, at least for now, doesn’t viable, do they revisit Jones? Maybe. But Lewis is ready, willing, and able. Wouldn’t be surprised if they just try to book that rematch for sometime later in the summer/fall. Doesn’t look like they are willing to meet Jones’ price right now.”

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This sparked a lot of conjecture about Jones’ disdain towards this matchup. As the Kawa bros manage both Lewis and Jones, the fact that the promotion would consider Lewis over Jones baffled many.

What’s more, this reignited the controversy of whether the UFC should submit to Jones’ demands and give him the money that fans and analysts think he deserves.

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A fight between Jones and Ngannou would have been a super-fight. They are two of the biggest UFC fighters and their match would have been a grand spectacle; however, Lewis is no slouch.

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Paras Pande

147 articles

Paras Pande is a UFC author at EssentiallySports who is pursuing his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication. An ardent follower of the UFC, he has been covering the sport for 2 years now. Before joining the team at EssentiallySports, Paras gained expertise as an MMA writer whilst working with Sportskeeda.

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