UFC 220 Prediction: Miocic vs Ngannou

The first major card from the UFC in 2018 will see current heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic defend his 265-pound belt against the up-and-coming Francis Ngannou, also known as The Predator. The fight takes place on 20th January in Boston, Massachusetts. This is the first time both athletes have met inside the Octagon, in addition to Miocic looking to extend his run of retaining the crown for the third time – a record which goes beyond the achievements of any fighter in this division.

The one man who can realistically claim to have a stronghold on the UFC heavyweight division is Stipe Miocic. The American heavy hitter has dominated the sport for the last two years and is showing no signs of letting up any time soon. Even at 35 years of age, Miocic cuts a lean figure in the Octagon. His speed, accuracy and punching power makes for a devastating arsenal that puts him amongst the elite UFC fighters in the modern era. Finally Dana White has found an opponent that may cause a potential upset and give Miocic a new type of challenge to contest with.

Francis Ngannou is being groomed as the future of the UFC 265 pound division, according to mixed martial arts insiders. They say it will be this bout against the current champ Miocic that will catapult him into the mainstream and kickstart his way to stardom. The UFC hasn’t as yet crowned a European-based superstar at this weight and will be hoping Ngannou is the man to emulate the legacy of the likes of Fedor Emelianenko. But does the challenger have the stamina and ring IQ to outperform a man who is equipped with more experience?

Stipe Miocic Form and Fight Record

Red-hot form is an understatement. Stipe Miocic has punched his way to the top of the division by knocking out his last five opponents. All four of his four last wins earned him a fight of the night or performance of the night accreditation – they lasted no longer than the first round. Even Mark Hunt, with a granite block for a head, couldn’t go the distance with the American hero. If there is one chink, it will be a possibility of ring-rust having not fought for nine months. Could this extended time out be the deciding factor in whether the champ retains his belt?

Stipe Miocic Last Five Boxing Fights

Win via KO/TKO – Junior Dos Santos

Win via KO/TKO – Alistair Overeem

Win via KO/TKO – Fabricio Werdum

Win via KO/TKO – Andrei Arlovski

Win via KO/TKO – Mark Hunt

 

Watch video highlights of Stipe Miocic against Junior Dos Santos

Francis Ngannou Form and Fight Record

The Predator comes into this bout with a record of 11-1-0 and a reputation that is shaking up the entire world of fight sports. Like his opponent, Ngannou has enjoyed a five-win streak comprising of knockouts and stoppages. He has done away with some of the big names that have failed to beat Miocic too, including Overeem and Arlovski who are no joke. In addition to extreme punching power and accuracy, Ngannou has demonstrated that he can finish fights by submission too, a discipline that gives his aggressive fighting style an extra dimension.

Francis Ngannou Last Five Boxing Fights

Win via KO/TKO – Alistair Overeem

Win via KO/TKO – Andrei Arlovski

Win via submission – Anthony Hamilton

Win via KO/TKO – Bojan Mihajlovic

Win via stoppage – Curtis Blaydes

 

Watch video highlights of Francis Ngannou against Andrei Arlovski

 

UFC Betting Odds

Here is a round-up of the popular markets according to leading global betting operators. Odds are displayed in fractions.

Francis Ngannou to win outright at 8/15 l Bet365

Stipe Miocic to win outright at 18/8 l Bet365

Fight to go more than 1 round at 11/10 l Betfair

Stipe Miocic vs. Francis Ngannou Prediction

This is the UFC heavyweight match-up fans have been itching to see. Sparks will fly in Boston, with the bookmakers putting the challenger as favourite to win. Ngannou is being backed for good reason – his punching power is undeniably harder than any fighter on this planet. If he gets this win, it will likely come as a result of a knockout. Similarly, Miocic who is surprisingly at odds as the underdog, is also expected to come out all guns blazing. No doubt that the bookies are predicting this UFC fight to end early. Both fighters will be gunning for a performance of the night to overshadow the UFC 220 co-main event of Cormier vs Oezdemir. 

Our tip is for a quick stoppage – bet on Miocic or Ngannou finishing the fight in under 3 rounds. 

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