Derrick Lewis Still Wants to Fight Francis Ngannou Despite Lackluster Showing at UFC 220
Derrick Lewis is probably never going to be a big fan of Francis Ngannou.
The two heavyweights have jabbed back and forth at each other through interviews and over social media for the past year and it doesn’t seem like that’s going to change any time soon.
The latest example came from Lewis, who took a shot at Ngannou after his one-sided loss to heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic when he posted a video on social media that showed him on a treadmill, which was a clear criticism of the conditioning problems the No. 1 ranked contender experienced in his first title fight.
Truth be told, Lewis says he didn’t actually watch the fight at UFC 220 because he refused to give Ngannou any of his hard earned month but he wasn’t surprised whatsoever with how the main event played out.
“I watched the highlights of the Francis [Ngannou] fight. I didn’t watch the fight cause I didn’t want to give Francis my money and pay for his pay-per-view,” Lewis said ahead of his next fight against Marcin Tybura at UFC Fight Night in Austin. “I seen the highlights and Stipe had him against the cage and Francis is on his knees and Stipe wasn’t putting that much pressure on him. All Francis had to do was stand straight up and Francis couldn’t even stand straight up. I know I wouldn’t just let Stipe hold me down like that.”
Ngannou may have been a favorite according to the odds makers, but Lewis anticipated that kind of performance from the ferocious Frenchman, especially being matched up with a wrestler as strong as Miocic.
Outside of a couple of shots landed in the opening round, Ngannou spent the majority of the fight defending takedowns and eating punches on the mat with Miocic pouring on the offense.
“I knew he wasn’t going to walk through Stipe,” Lewis said about Ngannou’s performance. “It was a five round fight and Stipe is a good wrestler. I knew that’s what Stipe was going to go in there and do. Ngannou had too much muscle. He was going to gas out quick as hell. Even in his next fight it’s going to be the same thing unless he loses a lot of that muscle.
“If he don’t lose all that muscle cause muscles feed off oxygen. He’s got to have a body like me to really survive in there.”
While Lewis is staying focused on his upcoming bout against Marcin Tybura on Sunday night, he undoubtedly would like the chance to face Ngannou to potentially earn a title shot later this year.
Lewis feels confident in every area against Ngannou and his head coach believes the fight could be even more one sided than what happened against Miocic in January.
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“I believe that I’m better than Francis all the way around,” Lewis said. “Striking, grappling, ground game, submission, whatever. I believe I’ve got better conditioning than him. I’m better disciplined. I listen to my coaches. I really believe I could beat this guy.
“Yeah I’ve had interest in fighting Francis. My coach just believes that I would really destroy Francis. My coach don’t like Francis at all either.”