Does PFL’s Renan Ferreira stand a chance against Francis Ngannou?

Renan Ferreira PFL
2023 PFL Championships at The Anthem in Washington D.C., Friday, Nov. 24, 2023. (Scott Taetsch / PFL)

This past Saturday during the PFL vs. Bellator CHAMPS card we saw the heavyweights close the show. 2023 heavyweight champion Renan Ferreira (13-3) took on Bellator heavyweight champion Ryan Bader (31-8). In addition to winning the super belt, a shot at former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou (17-3) was on the line.

Bader had never lost in the heavyweight division since jumping to Bellator from the UFC. He has been vocal for a long time about wanting to fight Francis Ngannou and outside of the UFC, Bader was considered the man to give Ngannou his toughest fight. Renan Ferreira is someone who has just recently put everything together.

At a staggering 6’8 with ungodly power, Ferreira never had issues with his natural ability. It was just a matter of putting everything together which he seemingly did during the 2023 PFL regular season. He looked so good last year that I actually predicted him to knock out Bader in this matchup.

While I was proven right in that prediction, even I didn’t see it happening as quick as it did. Just 21 seconds into the first round, Ferreira knocked out Bader winning the PFL vs. Bellator super belt and earning himself a shot against Ngannou.

Can the PFL champion defeat Francis Ngannou?

Out of the two potential fights, this is the one that fans should want to see. Francis Ngannou is largely considered to be the most powerful heavyweight on the planet. His knockouts throughout his career are insane and he’s proven just how good of a boxer he is.

Ngannou went the distance with heavyweight king Tyson Fury and even dropped The Gypsy King. Many, including myself, actually thought that Ngannou should’ve won the decision against Fury. Ngannou steps back into the boxing ring next week as he takes on former heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.

At some point, Ngannou will make his way back to the PFL to face Ferreira. Does Ferreira have a chance? He absolutely does given how much power he possesses. That said, how well can he take a shot from someone who punches like Francis Ngannou. One thing about that fight is it won’t go the distance. Regardless of how the boxing matchup with Joshua goes, expect Ngannou to be a massive favorite in his PFL debut. However, Ferreira does have a very solid punchers chance in that matchup.

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