Francis Ngannou adds legendary heavyweight champion Mike Tyson as trainer ahead of Tyson Fury fight



Ahead of his clash with Tyson Fury on Oct. 28, former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou has brought in another Tyson to be his trainer. It was announced on Thursday that Ngannou would be trained by former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson.

Ngannou is jumping right into the deep end after leaving the UFC, facing WBC champion Fury, the consensus No. 1 heavyweight in boxing. The bout has been met with some criticism as Fury is facing a boxing novice rather than a top heavyweight from his sport, a list that includes WBA, WBO and IBF champion Oleksandr Usyk.

Tyson believes Ngannou’s experience at the highest level of mixed martial arts can carry him to get the win.

“It is no secret I back Ngannou 100 percent in this faceoff of champions,” Tyson said in a statement on Thursday. “He has one hard punch, and when it lands, it’s game over. I am looking forward to working with Ngannou and supporting his transition from the octagon to the boxing ring.

“He isn’t a combat novice, he is a world champion. He knows how to compete when the bell rings, but the key will be combining his energy and combat skills into his punches and using his agility to move swiftly around the ring then delivering the knockout blow. We’re here to win.”

Tyson doubled down on his confidence in Ngannou during an appearance on ESPN’s First Take on Friday morning.

“When you say ‘first professional fight,’ he has many professional fights,” Tyson said. “He’s just never experienced a professional boxing match. Working with him yesterday, he has a good aptitude. I see a good future in this life, it’s not going to be as one-sided as people think it is. … I definitely believe it’s going to be a tougher fight than anybody thinks.”

Ngannou ended his time with the UFC as heavyweight champion. After defeating Ciryl Gane to complete the final fight of his contract, the UFC waived his non-compete clause when it was clear the parties would not be able to agree on financial compensation as well as Ngannou’s dream of chasing a fight with Fury.

Ngannou signed with PFL, where he will compete in the MMA promotion’s superfight division while also having equity and a leadership position as he pursues his stated goals of better pay for fighters.

He also was able to land his dream fight with Fury and bring in one of his idols in Tyson.

“Bringing Mike Tyson into my training camp is one of the best decisions I can make to prepare for Tyson Fury in the ring at this year’s Riyadh Season,” Ngannou said in Thursday’s announcement of Tyson’s involvement in his camp. “Mike Tyson is an idol of mine in the sport. His experience and boxing IQ will be important to honing my technique under his guidance to win this super-fight.

“I’ve been wanting this fight for years and now that it’s here, I’m focused on fighting the greatest fight of my career and shocking the world on the most epic stage for the fans in Riyadh. Oct. 28, the world will know who’s the ‘Baddest Man on The Planet.'”





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