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Francis Ngannou releases statement about UFC 226 performance: ‘I have carried my fear from the last fight to this one’

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Francis Ngannou
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Francis Ngannou is as disappointed in himself as everyone else is.

To say that Ngannou’s heavyweight co-main event vs. Derrick Lewis at UFC 226 this past Saturday was a letdown would be an understatement given the hellacious knockouts that both men have authored in the past. Instead of another memorable finish, fans were treated to 15 minutes of almost zero output from the fighters.

Afterwards, UFC president Dana White suggested that Ngannou’s rapid rise up the ranks had gone to his head, while Lewis blamed himself for having to battle through a back injury.

Ngannou was not present at the UFC 226 post-fight press conference, but he released a statement Monday in which he apologized for his lackluster performance.

“I am not proud of my last performance,” Ngannou wrote. “I have carried my fear from the last fight to this one. I completely understand the frustration and anger that it has caused to my fans, coaches, teammates, family and friends and I am truly sorry for that. I won’t let everyone down again. All I can do now is prove myself and make you proud again.”

Ngannou was coming off of his first loss in the UFC, a lopsided five-round decision defeat at the hands of then-heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic. He has now lost two straight and it looks like it will be an uphill climb to convince everyone that he is still a future star.