Daniel Cormier has revealed the name of the one UFC Heavyweight who can match Francis Ngannou for power. Cormier believes that Derrick Lewis can go toe-to-toe in the power department with Ngannou.
Derrick Lewis and Francis Ngannou are no strangers to one another. Both men clashed in a three-round heavyweight bout at UFC 226 in July 2018. The bout was severely criticized, with certain sections of the MMA community claiming that both fighters were too risk-averse and extremely inactive during the fight.
The Derrick Lewis vs. Francis Ngannou matchup went the three-round distance, with Lewis being declared the winner via unanimous decision. Lewis then went on to beat Alexander Volkov and proceeded to challenge then-UFC Heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier for the title at UFC 230 in November 2018. However, Lewis ended up losing to DC via second-round submission.
In the aftermath of The Black Beast's spectacular KO win over Curtis Blaydes at the UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Lewis event (February 20th, 2021), Daniel Cormier has weighed in on Lewis’ KO power. On an edition of ESPN MMA’s DC & Helwani, Cormier stated –
“It was on my Twitter, and I said, ‘Derrick Lewis has the most power ever’. And somebody goes, ‘Francis 1, Derrick 2’. Everybody started going Francis, Francis, Francis. People, there is a reason Francis Ngannou was so tentative in the fight against Derrick Lewis. It’s the only time he’s ever fought like that. Francis just bull rushes everybody; from Stipe Miocic to Alistair Overeem, almost a blatant disregard for them and their power.”
“He stood and took pictures with Derrick Lewis because of the power coming back in his direction. So, let’s not go acting as if Derrick Lewis doesn’t have power to match anyone in the heavyweight division, even Francis Ngannou. And when you talk about knockouts, nobody has more than Derrick. So, how do you say that another guy has more power than him? And that’s not a knock on Francis, it’s just reality.” said Daniel Cormier. (*H/T Sportskeeda for the transcription)
Intriguingly, back in 2017, Francis Ngannou visited the UFC Performance Institute and created a world record for the most powerful punch, recorded at 129,161 units. Be that as it may, Daniel Cormier has opined that Derrick Lewis’ power is right up there with that of The Predator.
Are Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis destined to face off in a rematch?
Francis Ngannou is on a four-fight winning streak, with his last fight being a first-round KO win over Jairzinho Rozenstruik in May 2020. Meanwhile, Derrick Lewis is coming off a huge second-round KO win over Curtis Blaydes.
Presently, Francis Ngannou is scheduled to face Stipe Miocic for the latter’s UFC Heavyweight title at UFC 260 (March 27th, 2021). A potential rematch between Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis could be on the horizon later this year, particularly considering that The Black Beast just viciously stopped the No.2 ranked UFC Heavyweight.