Deontay Wilder wants Francis Ngannou boxing match and MMA fight, sees it ‘as being a beautiful thing’

Deontay Wilder says he “most definitely” is open to fighting former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou not just once, but twice.

Wilder, a former longtime WBC heavyweight champ, said in an interview with TRILL BOXING TALK that he and Ngannou talked about fighting each other when they met at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas last September just a few weeks before his knockout win over Robert Helenius. Wilder said that UFC president Dana White also was involved in those conversations, sparking his interest in facing Ngannou in both boxing and mixed martial arts.

“I even thought about this idea, though: I was like, all right, let’s make it a two-fight deal,” Wilder said. “Everybody always comes to boxing, but let’s do this: You come to my sh*t, I come to yours. You know what I’m saying? You feel me? You come to my house, I come to yours. … I’m a true warrior.”

With Ngannou leaving the UFC last month and becoming a free agent, the idea could be more realistic than ever. Wilder is promoted by Showtime Boxing, which is “aggressively pursuing” Ngannou, according to Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinoza. With Bellator events airing on Showtime, it opens the possibility for Wilder and Ngannou to do one fight each in boxing and MMA – but in Bellator, not the UFC.


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Ngannou, 36, has yet to indicate what his next move will be. The PFL and Bare Knuckle FC have expressed plans to make a run at his services. Tyson Fury also proposed the idea of a mixed-rules bout with Ngannou.

Wilder, 37, is confident he’d take care of Ngannou in the ring. As for MMA, he said he’d be ready to train his all-around skill set to give himself the best chance at a win.

Bottom line: Wilder loves the idea of two fights with Ngannou.

“I could see it as being a beautiful thing,” Wilder said. “I’m speaking from my heart; it’s not just me thinking about the bigger picture of it. That’s just what my heart is telling me. It’s smiling when I think about this fight. It feels warm. Hopefully it comes to pass.”

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie