Stipe Miocic (18-2) broke the UFC’s all-time record for consecutive heavyweight title defenses, and did so at the expense of the highly hyped Francis Ngannou.
“I’m the baddest,” Miocic said after the fight, and there is no disagreeing with him after his performance against Ngannou.
Ngannou’s (11-2) best attack came in the 1st round, when both fighters were fresh, walking Miocic to the fence and delivering hard combinations that left swelling around Miocic’s left eye.
However, after that first round, Miocic gained control by relying on his grappling skills, taking 6 of 14 takedown attempts, according to Fightmetric.
That wore down the heavy hitting Ngannou, who looked fatigue in the 3rd despite throwing heavy punches albeit at a slower pace.
“I think I underestimated him a little bit,” Ngannou said. “He’s very smart.”
“I do [believe I’m the greatest of all time],” Miocic said. “No one has ever defended the title three times. I had a killer row of fighters to get to it. I had a hard path to the title. Then I hard path to defend the title Top dudes. Arlovski. Werdum in Brazil. Next guy, Overeem, killer. [Dos Santos], who I lost to previously. Now, a guy who’s a phenom. Nothing is ever easy. I never had an easy road.”
UFC president Dana White told ESPN that he is interested in a potential super fight between Miocic and Daniel Cormier.