UFC and Francis Ngannou failed to reach an agreement on an extension of cooperation. This was confirmed by Dana White at the press conference. Dana White revealed that he was offered the biggest contract to date, but that the Nigerian still has other plans.
“We offered Francis a deal that would have made him the highest paid heavyweight in the history of the company,” White said, as quoted by mmafighting.com “More than [Brock] Lesnar, more than anybody, and he turned the deal down.
We get to this point where I’ve told you guys before, if you don’t want to be here, you don’t have to be here. I think Francis is in a place right now where he doesn’t want to take a lot of risk. [He] feels he’s in a good position where he could fight lesser opponents and make more money.
So we’re going to let him do that. We’re going to release him from his contract, we’re going to give up our right to match, and he can go wherever he wants and do whatever he wants. That’s where we’re at”.
Dana White on Francis Ngannou
Dana White doesn't seem too disappointed with his decision. They know that Ngannou is an important component of their company, but no one can change his opinion. “We did everything we could to try to make this fight happen and try to give him the fight, but he’s got it in his head that there’s bigger opportunities outside the UFC with lesser opponents,” White said.
“You’re going to fight arguably the greatest fighter of all time. You’d be the highest paid heavyweight ever in heavyweight history, or you think there’s more money out there to fight somebody who isn’t the greatest of all time, somebody who is a lesser opponent. You’ll have to ask Francis that question, but in my opinion, that’s what it is”.