Francis Ngannou, one of the most feared heavyweights in MMA, has signed a “strategic partnership” with the Professional Fighters League (PFL). The tournament-based promotion announced the signing on Tuesday, following four months of speculation over Ngannou’s next move after he relinquished the UFC heavyweight title in January to become a free agent. As part of his deal, Ngannou will receive equity and leadership roles in the PFL, as well as the opportunity to pursue his long-time dream of professional boxing.
Francis Ngannou Finds a New Home in PFL
Francis Ngannou, the former UFC heavyweight champion and one of the biggest names in MMA, has signed a deal with the Professional Fighters League (PFL). The announcement was made on Tuesday, ending months of speculation about Ngannou’s future after he relinquished the UFC heavyweight title in January to become a free agent.
Ngannou’s “Strategic Partnership” with PFL
Ngannou’s signing with PFL is being called a “strategic partnership” that gives him equity and leadership roles in the organization. He plans to make his debut in mid-2024 after an expected boxing match in 2023. As part of the deal, Ngannou will also become the new chairman of PFL Africa and have a role on the PFL advisory board to represent the athlete’s interests.
PFL’s “Superfight” Division
Ngannou will compete in the PFL’s newly launched “superfight” division, featuring high-profile fights, most likely on pay-per-view, with fighters receiving a bigger share of the profits. This represents a major coup for PFL, one of several MMA promotions to bid for Ngannou’s services.
Ngannou’s Future Plans with PFL
Ngannou’s deal with PFL also gives him the right to pursue his longtime dream of professional boxing. He has tried to book a fight with Tyson Fury this summer and has been linked to fights with ex-champs Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. Ngannou’s departure from UFC as an active champion was virtually unprecedented, and his signing with PFL represents a new chapter in his MMA career.
Ngannou Finds a Partner in PFL
Ngannou said he is excited about his deal with PFL because they came as a partner that sees more value in him as a person. PFL CEO Peter Murray said, “This is not an athlete deal. Francis is an icon today in the sport, he is the best in the world at what he does, but he’s in business with the PFL. We’re in business together.”
Francis Ngannou’s signing with PFL represents a major move in the MMA world, with Ngannou finding a new home in a promotion that values him as more than just an athlete. With his debut in PFL’s “superfight” division expected in 2024, fans of the sport can look forward to seeing Ngannou in high-profile fights and possibly even in the boxing ring.