Stipe Miocic Says He’s ‘Going For Broke’ When He Fights Francis Ngannou
Stipe Miocic isn’t known for being the liveliest interviewee, but yesterday on the JRE MMA Show Podcast, the UFC heavyweight champion appeared to be excited about his upcoming fight with Francis Ngannou at UFC 220 on Jan.20.
Ngannou knocked out Alistair Overeem at UFC 218 and booked his spot as the number one contender for Miocic’s belt earlier this month. Less than a week later, the deal was done and the two will now meet at the TD Garden in the new year.
Speaking yesterday, Miocic said he was excited about the fight, but he was adamant that he’d still be walking out the champion.
“I’m excited for him; he’s going to get his shot,” Miocic said (h/t MMA Fighting). But as long as I’m here, no one’s going to be champ.”
“I think he’s a great fighter. Definitely, he brings it. Hits hard, but unfortunately nothing is going to change. I’m walking out with the belt still wrapped around my waist.”
Ngannou’s devastating knockout of Overeem will be forever replayed on UFC highlight reels given the fierce power that snapped the Dutchman’s head back so violently. Miocic admitted that Ngannou was a heavy hitter, but added that it isn’t anything he isn’t used to.
“I think everyone hits hard in the heavyweight division,” Miocic said. “I mean, 260-pound men, 250-pound men, you’re not supposed to be hit by something like that. I fought JDS, I fought Alistair Overeem, I fought Mark Hunt.”
“I fought guys who threw hard. And he’s a little wild too, which, that’s tough. Sometimes you can’t prepare for that because there’s punches you don’t see.”
Miocic vs Ngannou is arguably the biggest heavyweight fight the UFC has put on in years. Fans around the world are deeply anticipating the sight of seeing both men share the cage and according to the current champion, they will all be seeing him exit it with the belt still strapped around his waist.
“He’s definitely gotten better, there’s no question, but we’ll see what happens,” Miocic said.
“Listen, I’m going out there for broke. I’m going out there to win.”