Power-punching Ngannou violently knocked out Stipe Miocic in the second round at UFC 260 in Las Vegas, avenging his 2018 defeat against the outgoing champ.
Ngannou celebrated in the Octagon, but not half as joyously as his dedicated fans watching on a big screen in Cameroon. Drinks, chairs, limbs - everything went into the air as, after a cagey start, Ngannou pounced to blast Miocic down and out.
You need to see this!
:round_pushpin: Batié, Cameroon
Incredible scenes from the hometown of @Francis_Ngannou as they celebrate the crowning of a new UFC Heavyweight Champion! :flag_cm:
(:projector: Mathieu Pennella) pic.twitter.com/NSA57bUsmA
- UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) March 28, 2021
The Ngannou fans are sitting or standing in tense silence until their man breaks through with a volley of punches in round two, which is when the fun starts.
The reaction to the short left hook - and hammer-fist follow up - that finishes Miocic is extraordinary however. Drinks are flying through the air as the fans roar and leap around in celebration. One fan drops to his knees then falls to the ground.
Francis with his whole country behind him so inspirational, it's gonna be hard to dethrone this new version of Ngannou https://t.co/Iq1JHJPTtp- ꜱᴀᴜᴄᴇ (@2LostInDaSauce) March 28, 2021
Look at what it means to them :yellow_heart::yellow_heart::flag_cm::flag_cm::flag_cm: https://t.co/X7usiq1wJC- WhatsApp Ricky (@2spagettimeals) March 28, 2021
Frankly, we haven't seen such scenes since World Cup 2018 and a load of England fans in a box park, as Ngannou became Africa's first UFC heavyweight champ.
It's understandably a hugely proud moment for Batie, which has a population of just over 10,000 people. But one of their own now sits at the top of the heavyweight division as the best big man in MMA.
Just a kid from Batié, Cameroon :flag_cm: #UFC260 pic.twitter.com/7ipT9YFzkQ
- UFC (@ufc) March 28, 2021
The 34-year-old Ngannou suffered two decision losses in 2018. However he's improved and come back since, and is now on a spectacular five-fight KO streak. His MMA record stands at 16-3, with all his victories coming inside the distance.
Miocic, now 38 years old, suffered his first defeat since 2018 when he lost the UFC heavyweight title to Daniel Cormier (a defeat he avenged twice over).
Whether the American will want a trilogy fight with Ngannou remains to be seen. The alternative for 'The Predator' could be a bout with light-heavyweight great Jon Jones, who's moving up to the heavyweight division.
No matter who Ngannou's first title defence comes against, there will certainly be a lively and expectant crowd in Cameroon watching on.
Featured image credit: UFC/BT Sport
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