BKFC heavyweight champion Joey Beltran believes that his former opponent Stipe Miocic could emerge victorious in his upcoming rematch with Francis Ngannou at UFC 260. Beltran has even gone as far as saying that he is confident Miocic would stop the Cameroonian-French challenger once again.
Joey Beltran and Stipe Miocic fought each other almost a decade ago at UFC 136, a fight the reigning UFC heavyweight champion won via decision.
In a recent interview with RT Sport MMA, Beltran said that Miocic has improved leaps and bounds since the time they fought each other. He feels that the skillset that Francis Ngannou requires to beat Stipe Miocic cannot be acquired in a short period of time, which augurs well for the chances of a victory for Miocic.
Beltran has said that Miocic could wear Ngannou out gradually by mixing up strikes and takedowns before landing the killer blow once the challenger runs out of gas. He also praised Miocic for being able to withstand shots from Ngannou during their first fight and believes it won't be easy to put the champ to sleep.
"Stipe isn't the same guy who I fought back in 2011. He has (expletive) grown leaps and bounds. I think he stops Francis Ngannou this fight. Honestly, I think he'll stop him early on in the fourth round. I think the skillset that Francis would have needed to develop to even the playing field with Stipe, he couldn't have developed in such a short amount of time," said Beltran.
"Ultimately ,that's a huge advantage where you can dictate where the fight goes. 'We're going to go to the ground, or we're going to go to the ground and I'm going to let you back up. Take you down, let you back up.' That just drains you as a heavyweight so much," continued Beltran.
Will Francis Ngannou suffer the same fate in the rematch against Stipe Miocic?
Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou threw down for the heavyweight title back in 2018 at UFC 220.
The champion completely dominated that fight before getting his hand raised via a lopsided decision. However, a lot has changed since then, and Ngannou has proven himself to be a worthy challenger for the title again, raking up a string of violent KO wins inside the octagon.
Ngannou believes that the outcome could be different this time. What do you think in this regard? Do sound off in the comments section below.