Francis Ngannou opens as betting favourite against Stipe Miocic

Francis Ngannou opens as betting favourite against Stipe Miocic

Ross Houston
December 8, 2017

A victor of five consecutive fights, including two title defenses, Miocic has run through numerous top contenders at heavyweight, but now he'll be facing one of the best prospects to join the roster in several years.

After announcing last week that Daniel Cormier will defend his light-heavyweight title against Volkan Oezdemir at UFC 220, Stipe Miocic's third outing as heavyweight champion has also reportedly been added to the 20 January card.

Ngannou has won all six of his UFC bouts inside the distance, the latest victory coming last weekend when he needed less than two minutes to overcome former Strikeforce champion Alistair Overeem with a spectacular uppercut knockout. Ngannou (11-1), however, has been active, stopped every fighter put in front of him, and is every opponent's nightmare: big, strong, fast, and hits like a Mack truck.

The heavyweight clash is expected to headline the UFC 220 pay-per-view event, which also will feature a previously announced light heavyweight title bout between Daniel Cormier (19-1) and Volkan Oezdemir (15-1). He tied the record with a first-round knockout of Junior dos Santos at UFC 211 in Dallas on May 13. All 26 of his strikes were considered significant, according to FightMetric.

A perfectionist in and out of the cage, Miocic earned his measure of redemption from the unanimous-decision loss in a five-round slugfest against dos Santos at UFC Fight Night: Dos Santos vs. Miocic in Phoenix, Arizona on December 13, 2014. Overall, he's 11-2 in the UFC.

As for Ngannou, he has yet to be beaten under the UFC banner.

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