One of the biggest events of the year, quite literally, is set to kick off this weekend. A dream matchup of top heavyweights in boxing and MMA is set to go down in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday night when WBC and lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury squares off with former UFC and lineal heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou. The two will meet inside the boxing ring as the latest in the crossover genre.
Your mileage will vary on crossover fights, but there is no denying the spectacle of Fury vs. Ngannou. The fight — dubbed “Rumble in Riyadh” — features two of the best heavyweights of their time in their respective sports. The painfully overdue Fury vs. Oleksandr Usyk fight has damaged Fury’s brand, but the former unified heavyweight boxing champ is a generational talent.
“What will be will be though,” Fury told CBS Sports this week. “I’m not worried about Usyk at all. Usyk, to me, I’m not interested at all. At this present moment in my time in life, I’m only interested in Ngannou. So if I get a massive cut 27 inches across the eyebrow and I get an injured right hand and two broken ribs in victory, then that’s what I’ll do. I’m not too concerned about Usyk at all. All my focus and energy is going into fighting Francis and I’ve given it an unbelievable preparation.”
Ngannou rocked the mixed martial arts world at the beginning of the year after splitting from UFC despite being the promotion’s heavyweight titleholder. It’s impossible to ask Ngannou to bridge the technical gap against Fury (33-0-1) in his boxing debut, but there is arguably no MMA fighter with a puncher’s chance more powerful than Ngannou.
The ring’s structural integrity will be tested on Saturday. All but one of the undercard fights will feature heavyweights. The most notable of the bunch is Fabio Wardley vs. David Adeleye. The undefeated boxers were originally expected to compete for Wardley’s British heavyweight title but the belt cannot be sanctioned for overseas cards. Wardley vs. Adeleye will commence as a non-title bout.
Below is the complete fight card for Fury vs. Ngannou. Check back all week long for the latest news, features and other content around this massive event.
Fury vs. Ngannou fight card, odds
|Tyson Fury -1400
|Francis Ngannou +750
|Fabio Wardley -310
|David Adeleye +230
|Joseph Parker -1200
|Simon Kean +600
|Martin Bakole -750
|Carlos Takam +475
|Arslanbek Makhumodov -4000
|Anthony Wright +1100
|Moses Itauma -3000
|Istvan Bernath +1000
Fury vs. Ngannou info
- Date: Oct. 28
- Location: Boulevard Hall — Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
- Start time: 2 p.m. ET (Main card)
- How to watch: ESPN+ PPV | Price: $79.99