Mike Tyson thinks Francis Ngannou is going to give Tyson Fury a legitimate fight.
Ngannou and Fury are set to face each other in a boxing match on Oct. 28 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The bout will be the biggest payday of Ngannou’s career and many fans view the matchup as simply a cash grab from the former UFC heavyweight champion. But former boxing heavyweight champion Mike Tyson disagrees. Speaking with Ngannou on his Hotboxin’ with Mike Tyson podcast, Tyson said that people are underestimating him.
“This is what you have to look [at] when you think about him fighting Tyson Fury — Conor McGregor went 11 rounds or 10 rounds with Floyd Mayweather, the greatest fighter of his generation, if not all-time. If that can happen, why can’t he give Tyson a capable fight?” Tyson said. “Floyd Mayweather is the greatest fighter in the world as far as technique and style. So why doesn’t he have a chance if McGregor did well and did a great account of himself? Everybody respects him for his effort. Nobody said, ‘He’s a b****.’ No one is saying that.”
Tyson is currently helping Ngannou get ready for Fury, and while he previously noted that Ngannou’s legendary power gives him a shot at the upset, Tyson added here that he’s been impressed by Ngannou in their training thus far.
“We worked out yesterday and I saw a lot of good qualities,” Tyson said. “He pretty much just needs to shake off some of the cobwebs and then it’s full speed ahead. You learn pretty quick, too, which I was really impressed with.”
While Tyson is now sold that Ngannou can at least give a good accounting of himself in the ring, “The Predator” still has his mind set on the upset, and he believes Tyson is the man to help him do that.
“If I land a bomb on Tyson Fury, I think the lights turn off for him,” Ngannou said. “But now the problem is how to sharpen the weapon properly to land that bomb, because it’s good to have a bomb, but the great Teddy Atlas always says: Delivery system. You have to have a proper delivery system. That’s something that’s always stuck in my mind. You have to have a bomb, that’s cool, but how to have a good delivery system to aim and shoot [is more important], and that’s why Mike Tyson is here.”