Francis Zavier Ngannou (born 5 September 1986) is a Cameroonian mixed martial artist. He currently competes in the heavyweight division for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), where he is the reigning UFC Heavyweight Champion. He is known for being the hardest recorded puncher in history. As of June 14, 2021, he is #5 in the UFC men's pound-for-pound rankings.
|Born||Francis Zavier Ngannou|
5 September 1986
|Other names||The Predator|
|Residence||Las Vegas, Nevada, US|
|Height||6 ft 4 in (193 cm)|
|Weight||263 lb (119 kg; 18 st 11 lb)|
|Reach||83 in (211 cm)|
|Fighting out of||Paris, France|
|Team||UFC Performance Institute|
MMA Factory (formerly)
|Trainer||Eric Nicksick (Head coach)|
Dewey Cooper (Striking coach)
Fernand Lopez (formerly)
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Early life and educationEdit
Ngannou was born and raised in the village of Batié, Cameroon. He lived in poverty and had little formal education growing up. Ngannou's parents divorced when he was six years old, and he was sent to live with his aunt. At 10 years old, Ngannou started working in a sand quarry in Batié because of a lack of funds. As a youngster, he was approached by several gangs in his village to join them. However, Ngannou refused and instead decided to use his father's negative reputation as a street fighter as motivation to do something positive and pursue boxing.
At the age of 22, Ngannou began training in boxing, despite the initial reluctance of his family. After training for a year, Ngannou stopped training due to an illness. He did various odd jobs to make ends meet, until at the age of 26, he decided to head to Paris, France, to pursue professional boxing. However upon reaching Europe, he was jailed for two months in Spain for illegally crossing the border. After Ngannou reached Paris, he had no money, no friends, and no place to live. After living homeless on the streets of Paris, he was introduced by a friend to Fernand Lopez and the MMA factory. Being a fan of Mike Tyson, Ngannou was originally interested in learning how to box but Lopez saw his potential in MMA and convinced him to try MMA instead. Lopez gave Ngannou some MMA gear and allowed him to train and sleep at the gym for no cost thus starting Ngannou's MMA career.
When I started, I had nothing. Nothing. I needed everything. But when you start [to earn money], you starting collecting things: I want this, I want this, I want that. The purpose is not collecting things, though. The purpose is to do something great. Finish the dream you started.
I want to help my family, first, of course, but then I want to give opportunity to children in my country like me who have a dream to become a doctor or something. If I reach my dream, it will give me the opportunity to help those in my country who have their own dreams and nothing else to fulfill them.
I want to give some opportunity for children like me who dream of this sport and don’t have an opportunity like me. The last time I was in Cameroon, I brought a lot of materials for boxing and MMA to open a gym. Now I just bought a big space to start the gym, as well.
A lot of children now in Cameroon, because of me, they have a dream. They say, ‘I will be a champion in MMA. I will do boxing like Francis,’ because they saw me when I was young. I didn’t have anything. I didn’t have any opportunity. And today, they see me, and they are dreaming. They are thinking that something is possible. Even when they are so poor, something is possible in life. … It's not easy. It's so hard, but it's possible.
Mixed martial arts careerEdit
Ngannou started his MMA career in November 2013 and fought mostly in the French promotion 100% Fight, as well as other regional promotions in Europe. He compiled a record of 5–1 before signing with the UFC.
Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit
In his next bout, Ngannou faced another newcomer in Bojan Mihajlović on 23 July 2016, at UFC on Fox 20. He won the fight via TKO in the first round. Ngannou then faced Anthony Hamilton on 9 December 2016, at UFC Fight Night 102. He won the fight by submission in the first round, and earned his first UFC Performance of the Night bonus.
Ngannou faced former UFC champion Andrei Arlovski on 28 January 2017, at UFC on Fox 23. He won the fight via TKO in the first round. The win also earned Ngannou his second Performance of the Night bonus.
Ngannou was expected to face Junior dos Santos on 9 September 2017 at UFC 215. However, on 18 August, Dos Santos was pulled from the match after being notified of a potential USADA violation. In turn, Ngannou was removed from the card after promotion officials deemed that a suitable opponent could not be arranged.
In the highest profile fight of his career, Ngannou faced veteran Alistair Overeem on 2 December 2017 at UFC 218. He won the fight via knockout in the first round. This knockout has been labeled as one of the greatest and most brutal knockouts of all time.
Ngannou faced Derrick Lewis on 7 July 2018 at UFC 226. He lost the fight via unanimous decision. The fight was heavily criticized by the media and the fans for the lack of offence from both competitors and was labeled as a "snoozefest".
Ngannou faced Curtis Blaydes in a rematch on 24 November 2018 in the main event at UFC Fight Night 141 He won the fight via TKO early into the first round. The win also earned him a Performance of the Night bonus.
Ngannou faced second-straight former UFC champion Junior dos Santos on 29 June 2019 at UFC on ESPN 3. He won the fight via technical knockout in the first round. This fight earned him the Performance of the Night award.
Ngannou was scheduled to face Jairzinho Rozenstruik on 28 March 2020 at UFC on ESPN: Ngannou vs. Rozenstruik. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was eventually postponed . The pair was rescheduled to meet at 18 April 2020 at UFC 249. However, on 9 April, Dana White, the president of UFC announced that this event was postponed and the bout eventually took place on 9 May 2020. Ngannou won via knockout just 20 seconds into the first round. This win earned him the Performance of the Night award.
UFC Heavyweight ChampionshipEdit
Miocic vs. Ngannou IIEdit
A rematch for the UFC Heavyweight Championship bout between Miocic and Ngannou was scheduled on 27 March 2021 at UFC 260. Ngannou won the fight via knockout in round two. This win earned him the Performance of the Night award.
|2021||F9 ||Ferocious Professional||Cameo|
|2021||Jackass Forever ||Himself||Cameo|
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- Bleacher Report
- Pundit Arena
- MMA Fighting / SB Nation
- 2017 Knockout of the Year.
- World MMA Awards
- 2017 Knockout of the Year vs. Alistair Overeem
Mixed martial arts recordEdit
|Professional record breakdown|
|19 matches||16 wins||3 losses|
|Win||16–3||Stipe Miocic||KO (punch)||UFC 260||27 March 2021||2||0:52||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Won the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.|
|Win||15–3||Jairzinho Rozenstruik||KO (punches)||UFC 249||9 May 2020||1||0:20||Jacksonville, Florida, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||14–3||Junior dos Santos||TKO (punches)||UFC on ESPN: Ngannou vs. dos Santos||29 June 2019||1||1:11||Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||13–3||Cain Velasquez||KO (punches)||UFC on ESPN: Ngannou vs. Velasquez||17 February 2019||1||0:26||Phoenix, Arizona, United States|
|Win||12–3||Curtis Blaydes||TKO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Ngannou 2||24 November 2018||1||0:45||Beijing, China||Performance of the Night.|
|Loss||11–3||Derrick Lewis||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 226||7 July 2018||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||11–2||Stipe Miocic||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 220||20 January 2018||5||5:00||Boston, Massachusetts, United States||For the UFC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||11–1||Alistair Overeem||KO (punch)||UFC 218||2 December 2017||1||1:42||Detroit, Michigan, United States|
|Win||10–1||Andrei Arlovski||TKO (punches)||UFC on Fox: Shevchenko vs. Peña||28 January 2017||1||1:32||Denver, Colorado, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||9–1||Anthony Hamilton||Submission (kimura)||UFC Fight Night: Lewis vs. Abdurakhimov||9 December 2016||1||1:57||Albany, New York, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||8–1||Bojan Mihajlović||TKO (punches)||UFC on Fox: Holm vs. Shevchenko||23 July 2016||1||1:34||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Win||7–1||Curtis Blaydes||TKO (doctor stoppage)||UFC Fight Night: Rothwell vs. dos Santos||10 April 2016||2||5:00||Zagreb, Croatia|
|Win||6–1||Luis Henrique||KO (punch)||UFC on Fox: dos Anjos vs. Cerrone 2||19 December 2015||2||2:53||Orlando, Florida, United States|
|Win||5–1||William Baldutti||TKO (punches)||KHK MMA National Tryouts: Finale 2015||28 May 2015||2||1:22||Madinat Isa, Bahrain|
|Win||4–1||Luc Ngeleka||Submission (guillotine choke)||SHC 10: Carvalho vs. Belo||20 September 2014||1||0:44||Geneva, Switzerland|
|Win||3–1||Nicolas Specq||Submission (arm-triangle choke)||100% Fight 20: Comeback||5 April 2014||1||2:10||Levallois, France|
|Win||2–1||Bilal Tahtahi||KO (punch)||1||3:58|
|Loss||1–1||Zoumana Cisse||Decision (unanimous)||100% Fight: Contenders 21||14 December 2013||1||5:00||Paris, France|
|Win||1–0||Rachid Benzina||Submission (armbar)||100% Fight: Contenders 20||30 November 2013||1||1:44||Paris, France|
- (PDF) https://boxing.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/boxing.nv.gov/content/results/2021_Results/03-27-21MMA.pdf. Missing or empty
- "Francis Ngannou | UFC". www.ufc.com. Retrieved 17 July 2019.
- "Stats | UFC". ufcstats.com. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
- UFC's Francis Ngannou explains why moving to Las Vegas was right for him, MMA Junkie, retrieved 29 January 2021
- Coach Eric Nicksick: Keeping Francis Ngannou calm at UFC 260 was 'our main priority', MMA Junkie, retrieved 29 March 2021
- Uncaged Interviews #2: Dewey Cooper | Ngannous coach responds to allegations from former coach, The UNCAGED Podcast, retrieved 29 January 2021
- Purohit, Bhavesh (28 January 2021). "Watch: When Francis Ngannou created the world record for the hardest punch". www.sportskeeda.com. Retrieved 28 March 2021.
- "UFC Rankings | UFC.com". www.ufc.com. Retrieved 29 March 2021.
- Metro.co.uk, Coral Barry for (23 January 2017). "Fighter In Focus: The UFC's hottest heavyweight prospect is Francis Ngannou". Metro. Retrieved 28 January 2017.
- "Once homeless on the streets of Paris, Francis Ngannou on the verge of making his dream come true". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
- Francis Ngannou Details Working in Sand mines at Age 10, The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, retrieved 11 February 2021
- "Francis Ngannou : l'instinct du combat - L'Equipe Explore". L'Equipe.fr (in French). Retrieved 11 June 2017.
- "UFC Unfiltered: Francis Ngannou and Fortaleza preview". UFC.com. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
- MMAFightingonSBN (30 January 2017), The MMA Hour: Episode 366 (w/Rampage, Rumble, Lewis, Ngannou, Bader, More), retrieved 15 April 2017
- "From homeless to UFC contender, UFC on FOX 20's Francis Ngannou recounts his journey". MMAjunkie. 22 July 2016. Retrieved 10 September 2016.
- Nolan King (11 June 2020). "Francis Ngannou gets inspirational on Throwback Thursday reflecting on immigration hardship". mmajunkie.com.
- Coleman, Joe (28 March 2021). "New UFC champ Ngannou slept rough on way to top, loved Mike Tyson and packs a punch". talkSPORT. Retrieved 1 April 2021.
- Zane Simon (12 August 2015). "Welcome to the UFC, Francis Ngannou & Yusuke Kasuya". bloodyelbow.com. Retrieved 12 August 2015.
- "Debuting heavyweights Luiz Henrique, Francis Ngannou meet at UFC on FOX 17 in Orlando". MMAjunkie. 2 September 2015. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- John Morgan (19 December 2015). "UFC on FOX 17 results: Francis Ngannou smashes Luis Henrique with uppercut". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 19 December 2015.
- "Curtis Blaydes in for Bojan Mihajlovic against Francis Ngannou at UFC Fight Night 86". MMAjunkie. 14 March 2016. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- Damon Martin (10 April 2016). "Francis Ngannou beats Curtis Blaydes after nasty eye injury stops the fight". foxsports.com. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
- "Francis Ngannou vs. Bojan Mihajlovic added to UFC on FOX 20 in Chicago". MMAjunkie. 17 May 2016. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- Steven Marrocco (23 July 2016). "UFC on FOX 20 results: Francis Ngannou pounds out Bojan Mihajlovic in 94 seconds". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
- "Anthony Hamilton says he's fighting Francis Ngannou at UFC Fight Night 102 in Albany, N.Y." MMAjunkie. 4 October 2016. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- Ben Fowlkes (9 December 2016). "UFC Fight Night 102 results: Francis Ngannou powers his way into submission of Anthony Hamilton". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
- Mike Sloan (9 December 2016). "UFC Fight Night 102 bonuses: Villante, Safarov, Ngannou, Meerschaert all pocket $50K". sherdog.com. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
- "Arlovski vs. Ngannou set for UFC on FOX 23". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- Staff (28 January 2017). "UFC on FOX 23 bonuses: Valentina Shevchenko, Jorge Masvidal among $50,000 extra winners". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
- Marc Raimondi (28 June 2017). "Junior dos Santos vs. Francis Ngannou official for UFC 215". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 28 June 2017.
- "Junior dos Santos pulled from UFC 215 due to potential USADA violation". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 18 August 2017.
- Dave Doyle (28 August 2017). "Francis Ngannou is officially off UFC 215". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
- Staff (28 August 2017). "UFC 215 lineup set with 2 title fights in Edmonton, including Demetrious Johnson's quest for record". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
- Tristen Critchfield (27 September 2017). "Heavyweight contenders Alistair Overeem, Francis Ngannou set to clash at UFC 218". sherdog.com. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
- Campbell, Brian (3 December 2017). "UFC 218 results: Francis Ngannou flattens Alistair Overeem with vicious KO". CBSSports.com. CBS Broadcasting, Inc. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
- Dsouza, Keith (12 October 2020). "Top 10 Greatest Knockouts in the UFC". EssentiallySports. Retrieved 27 October 2020.
- Nichols, Jake. "Francis Ngannou annihilates Alistair Overeem, sets up title fight with Stipe Miocic". The Body Lock. Retrieved 27 October 2020.
- "Alistair Overeem releases statement after loss to Francis Ngannou at UFC 218". GiveMeSport. 3 December 2017. Retrieved 27 October 2020.
- "Stipe Miocic slated to defend heavyweight title against Francis Ngannou at UFC 220". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
- "UFC 220 results: Stipe Miocic bests Francis Ngannou in lopsided decision". MMA Fighting. 21 January 2018.
- Henken, Michael (20 April 2018). "Report: Francis Nagnnou vs. Derrick Lewis Set For UFC 226". LowKickMMA.com. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "UFC 226 results: Derrick Lewis beats Francis Ngannou in extremely awful 'fight'". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
- Dana White gives post-mortem on 'abomination' Ngannou vs. Lewis fight at UFC 226
- White reacts to Ngannou v Lewis snorefest
- Fighters react to Derrick Lewis defeating Francis Ngannou
- "UFC 226: Joe Rogan savages 'most boring heavyweight fight of all time' between Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis". Retrieved 8 July 2018.
- Cillian Cunniingham (16 August 2016). "Curtis Blaydes/Francis Ngannou rematch set for UFC Beijing". punditarena.com. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- Rondinone, Troy (20 April 2017). Fight Night. 1. University of Illinois Press. doi:10.5406/illinois/9780252037375.003.0001.
- Jon Fuentes (24 November 2018). "UFC Beijing Bonuses: Ngannou & Jingliang Bank $50k For Finishes". lowkickmma.com. Retrieved 24 November 2018.
- Damon Martin (22 December 2018). "Cain Velasquez Returns to Face Francis Ngannou in First UFC on ESPN Main Event". mmaweekly.com.
- "UFC on ESPN 1 results: Francis Ngannou stuns Cain Velasquez in just 26 seconds". MMAjunkie. 18 February 2019. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
- Marrocco, Steven (21 May 2019). "Junior Dos Santos vs. Francis Ngannou now headlines UFC on ESPN 3". MMA Junkie. Retrieved 21 May 2019.
- Evanoff, Josh (29 June 2019). "UFC Minneapolis Results: Francis Ngannou Quickly KOs Junior dos Santos". Cageside Press. Retrieved 30 June 2019.
- Stephie Haynes (30 June 2019). "UFC Minneapolis bonuses: Ngannou smashes dos Santos in POTN win". bloodyelbow.com. Retrieved 30 June 2019.
- Clyde Aidoo (13 December 2019). "BREAKING: Francis Ngannou Faces Jairzinho Rozenstruik in Columbus". mmanews.com. Retrieved 13 December 2019.
- Nolan King and John Morgan (15 March 2020). "UFC postpones three events amid growing coronavirus outbreak". mmajunkie.usatoday.com. Retrieved 16 March 2020.
- DNA, MMA. "BREAKING: Ngannou vs. Rozenstruik op 18 april aanstaande". Retrieved 7 April 2020.
- Brett Okamoto (9 April 2020). "Dana White says UFC 249 will not happen April 18". espn.com. Retrieved 9 April 2020.
- "REVISED – UFC 249: Ferguson vs. Gaethje Fight Card | MMAWeekly.com". 27 April 2020. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
- Evanoff, Josh (9 May 2020). "UFC 249 Results: Francis Ngannou Destroys Jarzinho Rozenstruik". Cageside Press. Retrieved 10 May 2020.
- Hiergesell, Dan (10 May 2020). "UFC 249 Bonuses! Gaethje Nets $100K For Main Event TKO". MMAmania.com. Retrieved 10 May 2020.
- Anderson, Jay (16 January 2021). "UFC 260: Stipe Miocic vs. Francis Ngannou 2 Set, Per Dana White". Cageside Press. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
- Anderson, Jay (28 March 2021). "UFC 260 Results: Improved, Patient Francis Ngannou Knocks Out Stipe Miocic, Claims Title". Cageside Press. Retrieved 28 March 2021.
- MMA Junkie Staff (27 March 2021). "UFC 260 bonuses: The new champ is among the $50,000 winners". MMA Junkie. Retrieved 27 March 2021.
- UFC - Ultimate Fighting Championship (24 November 2018), UFC Fight Night Beijing: Post-fight Press Conference, retrieved 24 June 2019
- SPORT, RMC, Le Vestiaire (in French), RMC SPORT, retrieved 14 October 2020
- "Francis Ngannou Talks About Learning English Ahead of Joining the Title Fray". www.vice.com. Retrieved 29 January 2021.
- Francis Ngannou Foundation: For Cameroon, retrieved 11 February 2021
- "UFC heavyweight Francis Ngannou opens 'first full MMA' gym in Cameroon". MMA Junkie. 14 January 2019. Retrieved 11 February 2021.
- "UFC Phenom Francis Ngannou Joins Fast And Furious 9 In A Mysterious Role". CinemaBlend. 15 August 2019. Archived from the original on 26 August 2019. Retrieved 20 July 2021.
- Schulz, Andrew (30 March 2021). "Francis Ngannou talks about Hollywood aspirations". Flargant 2. YouTube. Retrieved 9 July 2021.
- Kizzi Asala (28 March 2021). "MMA: Cameroon's Ngannou first African UFC world heavyweight champion". Africa News. Retrieved 28 March 2021.
- Snowden, Jonathan. "Bleacher Report 2017 MMA Awards: Best Fighter, Fight, Finishes and Story". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
- "ESPN's MMA awards for 2017: The fight, submission and knockout of the year". ESPN.com. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
- "Pundit Arena's 2017 UFC Awards - Pundit Arena". www.punditarena.com. 28 December 2017. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
- "MMA Fighting's 2017 Knockout of the Year: Francis Ngannou's 'uppercut from hell' crushes Alistair Overeem". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
- "MMA Fighting's 2017 Breakthrough Fighter of the Year: Francis Ngannou". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
- "MMAjunkie's '2017 Knockout of the Year': A head-rattling heavyweight finish". MMAjunkie. 7 January 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
- "MMA Junkie's 'Knockout of the Month' for March: A new champ is crowned". MMAjunkie.com. 30 March 2021.
- DNA, MMA. "MMA DNA UFC Awards 2018 : De Uitslagen!!!". Retrieved 28 January 2019.
- Bryan Tucker (4 July 2018). "World MMA Awards 2018 Results". mmafighting.com.
- Sherdog.com. "Francis". Sherdog. Retrieved 24 November 2018.