Every big-time contender has that one moment which marks him as one to watch, a legit competitor emerging from the mix and marking himself as a possible future champion.
For Francis Ngannou, that moment came on Saturday night.
A looping overhand left followed by a short right hand delivered to the jaw with terrifying efficiency was all the Frenchman by way of Cameroon needed to score a first-round TKO over former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski at UFC on FOX 23.
The time of the stoppage at Denver’s Pepsi Center was 1:23.
“I’m very happy for the fight because for me this fight was a new step,” Ngannou (10-1) said. “I’ve seen some top 10 fighters and they give me the best, and then today I was very happy to win the fight because I feel I prove myself to be better than him.”
Ngannou is 5-0 in the UFC, with all five of his victories stoppages in the first two rounds. All 10 of his career victories are via finish, with six knockouts and four submissions.
As for Arlovski (25-14, 1 NC), it appears his career second wind is now well in the past. Arlovski, who was knocked out for the 10th time in his career, has dropped four fights in a row, all via finish.