The title fight rematch between Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou is only a few hours away and the anticipation for the fight is through the roofs. Famed boxing coach and commentator Teddy Atlas shared a path for each fighter's victory at UFC 260 that might help fight fans take some of that tension from the air away until the fight starts.
Teddy Atlas did a breakdown video of Stipe Miocic vs Francis Ngannou 2 on his YouTube channel and analyzed the approach both fighters will need to take. Atlas hypothesized that although Francis Ngannou had firepower, he did not have the delivery system to execute the finish in the first fight. He was referring to Francis Ngannou's attempts to throw naked power shots at Miocic without setting them up. Teddy Atlas also said that Stipe Miocic should be prepared for his opponent's counters to his takedown attempts and use feints effectively to nullify the counters.
What are Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou's paths to victory according to Teddy Atlas?
Teddy Atlas pointed out that not using his jab was a mistake Francis Ngannou made in the first fight against Stipe Miocic. Atlas said Ngannou should expect takedown attempts from Miocic. 'The Predator' has to use his jab to keep Miocic away and force the champ to shoot for a takedown without setting a trap. Francis Ngannou can knock Stipe Miocic out while attempting a takedown, according to Teddy Atlas.
"Use that jab, you didn't use it the first time... Just to keep Miocic at bay... So he can't do what he wants to do, which is to eventually get to your legs... And then, give him a chance to get to your legs. Set a trap. Get back. He'll see you moving your feet and go right for the shoot (takedown). (At that moment you throw) your best punch, the right uppercut... you do that, and new," Teddy Atlas said.
Speaking about Stipe Miocic's keys to victory, Teddy Atlas alluded that taking the fight to the mat may not be possible for Stipe Miocic in the rematch as Ngannou will be prepared to thwart Miocic's wrestling. 'The Predator' could catch the champ with a knockout punch if he went for the takedown. Atlas predicts that faking takedowns will draw a reaction from Francis Ngannou. According to Teddy Atlas, Miocic has to exploit the openings created by Ngannou's reactions and land his own counter shots.
"Avoid the bomb being detonated... He'll (Francis Ngannou) look to set a trap, you set a trap! You used (boxing) feints pretty good the first time... This time, use the shoot (takedown) feints... Ngannou sees that... He's gonna go for the uppercut... As soon as he does that, you caught him with the left hook. You do that... And still," Teddy Atlas said.
Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou will fight in the main event of UFC 260: Miocic vs Ngannou 2. The event will be broadcast live from the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. The main card will start at 10:00 PM ET.