Francis Ngannou impressed by Jake Paul: ‘He proved his money is where his mouth is’

UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou approves of Jake Paul.

Paul remained unbeaten in his pro boxing career when he knocked out former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley in Round 6 of their rematch this past Saturday at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla.

The YouTube star-turned pro boxer has diverted his attention to other UFC fighters, such as welterweight champ Kamaru Usman, Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal, but regardless of who he fights next, Ngannou thinks Paul is not to be underestimated.

“Honestly, I was impressed by Jake Paul,” Ngannou told TMZ. “I didn’t see that coming. I was sure that Tyron Woodley was going to win this fight, you know? But you’ve got to give it to Jake Paul. He made a statement, a huge statement and he proved his money is where his mouth is. He’s taking himself very seriously. … You better take him seriously because he proved it.”

In the final fight of his current contract, Ngannou defends his heavyweight title against interim champ Ciryl Gane in the main event of UFC 270 on Jan. 22. Having always expressed interest in boxing the likes of Tyson Fury, lacing up the gloves could be in Ngannou’s near future as he enters free agency, but he certainly wouldn’t entertain a fight against Paul or anyone who isn’t established in boxing.

“No, that’s not the same thing,” Ngannou said. “It’s not the same generation. Even if I go out there for boxing, it’s not to box Jake Paul. As good as he might be, he’s not my level. He’s not my weight class, first of all. I might have 80-100 pounds over him. It’s not the same thing. He doesn’t want this smoke.”

Original article: https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/2021/12/francis-ngannou-impressed-by-jake-paul-he-proved-his-money-is-where-his-mouth-is

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