Reports - UFC to strip Francis Ngannou and book Jon Jones vs. Ciryl Gane for vacant heavyweight title

According to multiple sources, Francis Ngannou‘s protracted contract dispute with the UFC has fallen apart.

MMA reporter Ariel Helwani has all the more confirmed that Ngannou will be stripped of his UFC heavyweight title and the organization already has a plan in place for the future of the division.

Francis Ngannou has been embroiled in a contract dispute with the UFC since defending his title against Ciryl Gane at UFC 270. ‘The Predator’ claims that the UFC has hampered his progress and has demanded terms that would allow him to fight in boxing while still under contract with the UFC.

Recent leaks from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas indicate that the UFC has decided to move on from Francis Ngannou and is arranging a bout between two-time light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and Ciryl Gane. Gane, the former interim heavyweight champion of the UFC, also challenged Jones to a bout at UFC 285.

Ariel Helwani addressed all the speculations and issued an update, indicating that Francis Ngannou will be stripped of his UFC title, with Jones and Gane the frontrunners to fight for the vacant belt:

“Jon Jones vs. Ciryl Gane, is this real? Yes, this is a real thing….Choice No.1 was Jon Jones on December 10th…but they wanted to wait a little longer to see if they can get the Francis deal done and see if Francis would be healthy to do it on March 4th [UFC 285]. The deal with Francis is not 100% done, he’s not 100% [fit] yet so they’re going to it seems move on from that.”

Helwani added:

“In comes the Frenchman, Ciryl Gane, who’s been in Las Vegas all week. It’s a very real thing [fight with Jones]….not quite a 100%, but could be announced as early as tonight.”

Catch Helwani’s comments below:

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