Francis Ngannou has shared that he will not put pen to paper on a new UFC contract without an increase in pay. Ngannou is set to take on Ciryl Gane in a title unification bout in the main event of UFC 270, which is the last fight of his current deal with the UFC.
Speaking to ESPN MMA, Ngannou said:
“No. I will not fight for five, six hundred thousand anymore. I mean, it’s over. It’s over. I just did this. I took this [UFC 270] fight just for a personal reason and because I want to make sure that [he sees out his current deal] regardless, even if it’s unfair. I’ve been wrongly treated.”
The Cameroonian also opened up about the nature of the championship clause in his contract.
According to the clause, if Ngannou is still the champion after his next fight, his contract will either be extended by three fights or for the duration of one year. ‘The Predator’ reiterated the optional nature of the championship clause, adding that he could decide which contractual option to pursue.
The 35-year-old shared that he signed his current contract with the UFC in December 2017 (after his win over Alistair Overeem; prior to his first fight against Stipe Miocic). He has already completed seven of the eight fights on the contract.
The caveat is that the contract is valid for 5 years, which means that Ngannou will be contractually bound to the UFC until December 2022. He indicated that the promotion can’t hold onto him after the five-year duration runs its course by the end of the this year.
Ngannou added that if he were to re-sign with the UFC, the new deal must allow him the freedom to compete in professional boxing as well.
Watch Francis Ngannou’s interview in the video below:
Brendan Schaub believes Francis Ngannou leaving the UFC isn't a wise decision
According to Brendan Schaub, Francis Ngannou would do his career more harm than good if he chooses to leave the UFC after his upcoming title fight against Ciryl Gane.
Schaub, in a recent episode of The Schaub Show, stated that the UFC is the premier MMA organization in the world. He compared the promotion to the NFL and reasoned out why elite athletes need premier organizations to stay at the top of their games.
"As his business manager, if it's legacy, not re-signing with the UFC can be little dicey, because name someone who has left the UFC and has gotten more famous, has gotten bigger, and received more endorsements... UFC is MMA, it just is. A lot of people don't want to hear this... but this is facts. If you're not fighting in the UFC, you're just not considered the best in the world! That's not my thing... That's just the way it is. If you're not playing in the NFL, you're not considered the best quarterback."
Boxing, of course, offers greater financial opportunities to its top stars. Tyson Fury, the biggest heavyweight star in boxing, reportedly raked in $18 million in total for his trilogy bout with Deontay Wilder in 2021. In comparison, Ngannou only earned $730,000 in his last fight according to reports.
Watch the full episode of Brendan Schaub's show: