Ngannou took WBC champion Fury to a split decision in their crossover boxing match this past Saturday in Saudi Arabia, an outcome he disagrees with. The former UFC heavyweight champion knocked down Fury in Round 3 and stood toe to toe with him for all 10 rounds.
Atlas gave Fury Rounds 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 9, and 10. He scored Round 3 10-8 for Ngannou, and the only other round he gave him was Round 8. It was Round 7 that Atlas struggled to score, finally deciding on a 10-10 draw. Atlas’ overall tally favored Fury for being the busier fighter.
“My final score: 97-93 for Mr. Fury,” Atlas said on his show, “THE FIGHT with Teddy Atlas.” “And like I said in my comments, lots of posturing, feinting, half jabs, lot of looking, could have been more even rounds possibly, but I know it’s an honest one, because I’m saying what I believe.”
Fury insisted that he did not underestimate Ngannou, but many observers believed he looked off. Atlas views the fight as an upset because Ngannou pulled off the unexpected, but he thinks Fury didn’t take him entirely seriously.
“Physically he did; he was in good shape,” Atlas said. “Good enough shape. But mentally he didn’t. He didn’t. I’m going to put my bottom dollar, and he won’t make an excuse. I give him credit for that. And I’m not making an excuse. Ngannou deserves every bit of credit, but there’s no doubt in my mind that Tyson Fury was compromised in a way that, as a human being, that he too thought it was going to be a fun thing, a money grab.
“It was going to be where he does what he wants. He wants to end it; he ends it. He wants to play, he wants to do an Ali shuffle, whatever he wants to do, he could do it. There was going to be nothing to worry about. … You can’t say it’s going to be an easy day because you’re going to get screwed.”
For more on the matchup, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for Fury vs. Ngannou.