Dillian Whyte: I Would Beat Stipe Miocic And Francis Ngannou In The UFC
Heavyweight boxer Dillian Whyte, recently hinted at a transition to the world of MMA. ‘The Villain’ called out Stipe Miocic and the ‘coward’ Francis Ngannou few weeks ago in a YouTube video, while also demonstrating how he would beat them.
While some might have thought that the callout was a one-off, in Whyte told The Sun that he could knock out any top ten UFC heavyweight if given a chance, including Miocic and Ngannou.
“Reigning WBC and UFC heavyweight champion of the world has a nice ring to it. I have not trained in kickboxing or MMA for a while but, for me, it is like riding a bike. Once I knock off some of the rust, my instincts come rushing back and I am ready to dominate again. The heavyweight guys over there, champion Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou, are elite and I would have to work on my grappling and wrestling. But I know, standing up and boxing in 4oz gloves, I could knock ANY of their top-ten heavyweights out.
“I would need time to get my MMA conditioning back because it is totally different to boxing where, if you are clever, you can take time in the three minute rounds. In these cages it is five-minute rounds of non-stop moving, kicking, punching, wrestling — it is no joke. But I have better hand skills than any of them and because they try to cover a lot of aspects, that leaves a lot of holes in their game. The guys at the top, like Miocic and Ngannou, come from boxing but weren’t good enough to make it as pro boxers — as they could have made more money — they would usually want to stand up. But as soon as they got in with me, they would want to take me down to wrestle.”
Whyte went on to explain why he called Ngannou a coward.
“I have called Ngannou a coward because, for a guy who is 6ft 4in tall and 18st, he has not shown enough heart in his two defeats. He was on a ten-fight win streak, mostly first-round wins against journeymen, and as soon as he stepped up he lost twice, when people did not just stand there and let him hit them. You get these guys in boxing as well as MMA, when they are on top in a fight they are a problem, full of confidence and trying to bully you. But as soon as you stand up to them and hit them back, they shrink.
“Ngannou quit in his two most recent defeats because he did not like the way the fights were going. How can you only land 11 punches in 15 minutes as he did when losing to Derrick Lewis? Ngannou said he would fancy a boxing match but I notice he didn’t mention my name even after I publicly called him a coward. Says it all really. However, I like the sound of stepping over to the UFC, seeing what sort of deal could be done. Becoming heavyweight champion in both is something no one has ever come close to doing before.”
Whyte isn’t the first boxer to call out Miocic and Ngannou. The Ring, WBC and lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, also called out the UFC heavyweights at the end of 2019.
Although Whyte has made a fantastic career in boxing, prior to that he was a successful kickboxer with 20 wins and only one defeat. He was a former two-time heavyweight British K1 champion and European K1 champion. But the 32 year old also had one pro MMA match back in 2008, in which he knocked out his opponent Mark Stroud, in just 12 seconds.
Upcoming Match Against Povetkin
Whyte is currently preparing to put his WBC interim title on the line against the dangerous contender Alexander Povetkin, at the Manchester Arena, England on July 4th. Although there is speculation that the location will change because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“I am a fighter, I will fight anywhere. If another country, like America or Saudi Arabia, lifts the lockdown before the UK then I have no problem meeting Povetkin there. I would fight him, or anybody else, in a car park if there was no other way to get the fight on. I have boxed in America and Saudi and have no problem returning. I have no interest in politics, so if we can get the fight on sooner elsewhere, I am happy to travel. Wherever the job is I am happy to go and do it Boxing fans make the sport. UK fans are great and fighters want to be in great fights to earn and keep their support.
“I want to box in front of big crowds. I want them to see the blood, sweat and tears, the knockdowns and comebacks. That is what makes the sport different to almost all of the other major sports people watch. But if fighting behind closed doors, in a studio or empty arena, is what it takes to get the sport back and fighters paid, I’ll do it.”
In regard to the uncertainty of the situation, Whyte has arranged his training system in a way that he can always be ready for a fight in four weeks.
“I moved my training camps to Loughborough University after the Anthony Joshua loss. Up until then I had just been getting by on brute strength and heart. When I got there I thought I was fit and powerful but I soon got a rude awakening. I was in a terrible place from a strength-and-conditioning perspective. And after assessing me and comparing my stats with other elite athletes, including Joshua, they could not believe I was competing at the level I had been. I have come on a long way over the last four years and am far fitter and more experienced. I learned a lot there but I was the first and only boxer there so now we have moved on.
“I have put my own team together with people whose knowledge and expertise is extensive and boxing specific. It is going to take me to the next level. With my new team I am going to train all year round and always be ready to fight, then I will only need a four-week camp to prepare for whoever my opponent is. Povetkin will be ready. A man and former world champion of his stature, in a country that big, will be training at great places.”
What do you think about Dillian Whyte’s chances against Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou in the UFC? And against Alexander Povetkin in boxing?