Shakur Stevenson is not convinced that Francis Ngannou’s better-than-expected performance against Tyson Fury means mixed martial artists can make their mark on boxing in general, and he’s willing to prove it.
The former UFC Heavyweight Champion knocked Fury down in the third of their ten-round contest, upsetting the odds by even making it the distance. A split-decision victory was awarded to the Brit, but many feel Ngannou was hard done by.
Speaking to TMZ Sports, undefeated two-weight champion Stevenson said that how Fury-Ngannou played out is not a sign all MMA fighters can make a seamless move into boxing.
“I say if they feel that way give it a try. If you’ve got some MMA guys that wanna come get in the ring with somebody like me I would love the opportunity to beat up an MMA guy and show them there’s real levels to it.
I just think Tyson Fury was off that night. Them dudes need to relax and stay in their lane.”
In fact, he’s ready to go as far as to prove his point in the ring. Asked if there was anybody from the UFC roster that he had his eye on, he mentioned ‘Suga’ Sean O’Malley – a fan-favourite bantamweight who has previously called out Devin Haney and Gervonta Davis.
“What’s that dude’s name? Sean… Sean O’Malley. Tell him we can get it in. I’m ready to lock in with him … Tell him there’s levels to this s**t, so if he wants to come try I’ll beat the s**t out him.”
Shakur has more pressing matters in the form of a world title shot to become a three-weight champion. Should he beat Edwin De Los Santos, he’s angling for a fight – like O’Malley – against Haney or ‘Tank’ Davis.