Francis Ngannou vs. Anthony Joshua? Promoter Eddie Hearn wants it next

After Francis Ngannou nearly shocked the world against Tyson Fury this past Saturday, Eddie Hearn hopes the ‘Predator’ sticks around for a fight with Anthony Joshua next.

By: Kristen King | 1 month ago
Francis Ngannou vs. Anthony Joshua? Promoter Eddie Hearn wants it next
Tom Hogan / Hoganphotos, IMAGO

Eddie Hearn is all in on Francis Ngannou fighting one of his stars

Eddie Hearn saw an opportunity after watching Tyson Fury vs. Francis Ngannou this past Saturday. Though Fury avoided a loss to Ngannou, his performance was not on par with what he had done in the ring prior to this fight. To Hearn, it was almost as if he was also a novice. 

In an interview with Claudia Trejos of DAZN, Hearn reacted to the Fury-Ngannou result, which most continue to call controversial. It appears as though the consensus is that the ‘Predator’ did enough to hand Fury a loss, and Hearn agrees. 

“The event was great. The production was incredible,” said Hearn. “You had one guy that’s never boxed before, fighting a guy that also looked like he’s never boxed before in Tyson Fury. I mean, I can’t believe what we were watching. A complete novice, in everybody’s book, just beat Tyson Fury. Ngannou won that fight. 

“He dropped him,” continued Hearn. “They did very little in the backend of the fight, but Fury looked like — you’re talking about the lineal heavyweight champion of the world. The Usyk fight, for me, [is dead].”

Hearn proposes Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou next

Ahead of Fury vs. Ngannou, it was announced that the former had finally agreed to face fellow champion Oleksandr Usyk near the end of the year. After he defeated Ngannou, Fury was face-to-face with Usyk in the ring to drum up interest in their upcoming fight. However, after this performance from Fury, the Matchroom Chairman says there is really no more interest in him against Usyk now. 

Instead of Fury vs. Usyk, Eddie Hearn proposes some different fights, which include one of his own stars. 

“Forget Fury-Usyk,” said Hearn. “Forget it because one, Ngannou just beat him. You got to give him the rematch, or let [Anthony Joshua] end Fury’s career. Six rounds is all we need there, otherwise we’ll never see that fight. 

“But if Fury has to fight Usyk, let AJ deal with Ngannou,” continued Hearn. “Three rounds is all we need there. We want the Wilder fight, too. We never expected to even mention Ngannou’s name, but he earned that right. He beat Tyson Fury tonight. I see people thinking Ngannou would beat Anthony Joshua. Just watch. Make that fight and see what happens. Three rounds is all we need.”

Anthony Joshua v Robert Helenius Weigh-In, London, UK - 11 Aug 2023 Anthony Joshua during the pre-match Anthony Joshua v Robert Helenius weigh-in at Westfield, Hammersmith & Fulham, London on Friday 11th August 2023 London Westfield Hammersmith & Fulham GBR
James Fearn of PPAUK, IMAGO

Is Francis Ngannou an easy fight for Anthony Joshua?

As far as how he sees Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou going, Eddie Hearn says it is an ‘easy’ fight. 

“I’ve messaged people about it,” said Hearn. “Listen, for me, it’s an easy fight. But, if the public believe it’s not an easy fight, then let’s see it. AJ wants to win the world heavyweight title. I haven’t even spoke to him about this, but I know the demand for Ngannou against AJ. It’s huge. Two great athletes. Two guys that look incredible on the scales. I have to speak to AJ [about it]. He wants to win the world heavyweight championship, but Anthony Joshua-Tyson Fury is no problem for us. Easy work, six rounds. Francis Ngannou, easy work, three rounds.” 

It is an interesting turn for Eddie Hearn, who initially saw Joshua fighting Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury before he ‘sails off into the sunset’. But in one night, that has completely changed, and now Ngannou is in the mix. Whether Ngannou gets Joshua next remains to be seen, but it is nice to see him have some other options. 

Tyson Fury on the floor after getting knocked down by UFC star Francis Ngannou.

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About the author
Kristen King
Kristen King

Kristen King is a writer for Bloody Elbow. She has covered combat sports since 2016, getting her start with outlets such as FanSided, MyMMANews and MMA-Prospects. She joined the BE team in 2020, covering a mix of news, events and injuries. In her time with BE, Kristen has created ‘Fright of the Night,’ a series that highlights some of the worst injuries in the sport.

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