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Demetrious Johnson: “Anthony Joshua Beats Francis Ngannou in MMA”

Demetrious Johnson: “Anthony Joshua Beats Francis Ngannou in MMA”

In a recent episode of “The MMA Hour,” UFC legend Demetrious Johnson shared his controversial take on a hypothetical MMA fight between Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou. Johnson’s opinion sparked a lively debate with Xtreme Couture head coach Eric Nicksick, as they dissected the potential dynamics of this crossover clash.

The Case for Anthony Joshua

Johnson believes that Anthony Joshua, despite being a boxing champion, has the physical attributes and understanding of range and distance that could make him a formidable opponent in an MMA fight. He explained, “Anthony Joshua understands the void, which is distance, right? Because at the beginning of a fight, that’s all it is. It’s all about distance.” Johnson emphasized Joshua’s athleticism and his ability to adapt, suggesting that with proper training, Joshua could defend against takedowns and check leg kicks effectively.

Addressing Ngannou’s Strengths

While acknowledging Ngannou’s power and success in both boxing and MMA, Johnson pointed out that Ngannou’s style might not be as versatile in an MMA setting against someone like Joshua. “It’s not like Francis is some world-class kickboxer… If I can take someone who’s athletic, which Anthony Joshua is, it’s an easy fight,” Johnson asserted. He further elaborated that Ngannou’s MMA victories often rely on his striking prowess rather than a comprehensive mixed martial arts skill set.

Eric Nicksick’s Perspective

Eric Nicksick, 2023 Coach of the Year, offered a more nuanced view, highlighting the importance of adaptability and preparation. He agreed with Johnson’s assessment of the fight but stressed the need to address potential weaknesses. “We have to show the element of level change, we have to kick the lead leg out, we have to do other things to maintain distance, cut the cage off, and then blast double that [expletive] and put him on his back,” Nicksick said, underscoring the importance of a well-rounded game plan.

Analyzing Hypotheticals

The discussion also ventured into the realm of hypotheticals, considering how Joshua might fare against other MMA fighters like Jon Jones. Johnson noted, “Jon Jones will go out there and force the clinch, he will go out there and force the wrestling exchange.” This comparison highlighted the varying strategies that different MMA fighters could employ, making the potential fight scenarios even more intriguing.

The debate between Demetrious Johnson and Eric Nicksick on Anthony Joshua versus Francis Ngannou in MMA offers a fascinating glimpse into the complexities of crossover fights. Johnson’s bold claim that Joshua could beat Ngannou, given the right training, challenges conventional wisdom and sparks discussions about the adaptability and skill sets of fighters across different combat sports. Whether this hypothetical matchup ever materializes or not, the conversation underscores the dynamic and ever-evolving nature of mixed martial arts.