Don’t write off Francis Ngannou just yet.
“The Predator” was back to his old ways at UFC Fight Night 141, as he scored a 45-second technical knockout of Curtis Blaydes in the evening’s headliner at Cadillac Arena in Beijing. After back-to-back disappointing losses against Stipe Miocic and Derrick Lewis, much of the hype surrounding Ngannou had subsided. However, in earning his second victory over Blaydes in the Octagon, the Cameroonian-born Frenchman reminded everyone of the formidable power in his hands.
On the strength of that victory, Ngannou climbs to No. 5 in our latest heavyweight poll. Blaydes, meanwhile, saw a six-fight unbeaten streak come to an end in disappointing fashion. He nonetheless moves up a spot to sixth, as Fabricio Werdum tumbles to No. 9 and could be on his way out of the rankings as a result of a lengthy USADA suspension.
Elsewhere, Alistair Overeem returned to the win column in the UFC Beijing co-main event with a ground-and-pound stoppage of Octagon debutante Sergey Pavlovich. Like Ngannou, “The Reem” ended a two-fight skid. He also moves up a spot, from eighth to seventh.
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