UFC 260 Miocic Vs Ngannou Preview

Stipe Miocic will be defending the heavyweight championship against Cameroon superstar Francis Ngannou. Over the past 5 years, Stipe Miocic has ascended into stardom during his run as UFC heavyweight Champion with 7 consecutive title fights, defending the belt 4 times losing only to the former light heavyweight champ Daniel Cormier on July 7th, 2018 which he avenged twice in their trilogy. His next opponent is a familiar foe in 6'4 250 lbs Francis Ngannou who has run rampant through the heavyweight division with the highlight-reel finish after finish.


First, we’ll examine Miocic striking volume and takedown efficiency.


*Significant Strikes can be described as all strikes from distance and power strikes in the clinch or on the ground. It does not include small, short strikes in the clinch or on the ground.


Stipe Miocic has been one of the most complete fighters throughout his UFC title run, he has boasted a 57% accuracy when throwing significant strikes. Specifically, over his past 7 fights, Miocic has landed an average of nearly 59 significant strikes per fight with 74.3% of those landed strikes coming from a distance. Miocic’s ability to effectively strike from distance should keep him out of the close exchanges with Ngannou.


Miocic overwhelms his opponents by attempting an average of 133.5 total strikes per fight in comparison to Ngannou’s 35.8 strikes attempted per fight. The impact of Miocic’s striking attrition can be a major factor in this fight, especially after out-landing Ngannou in their first matchup 200 to 33. Along with this striking output, Miocic was able to keep Ngannou inactive and susceptible to takedowns in their first fight, taking him down 6 times in that matchup.






Second, we’ll analyze Ngannou’s punching pedigree.


Francis Ngannou catapulted himself to the top of the heavyweight division by putting together a 6 fight win streak since the beginning of his UFC career(all finishes). Throughout Ngannou’s 12 fight UFC career, he has won 8 of them by knockout resulting from a punch which is a testament to his knockout power. Ngannou has also landed an average of 10.2 significant strikes per fight during his run to the title, adding in an accuracy of 45% on those strikes. Though there is a dropoff in striking volume between the two, the difference in punching power is apparent given that Ngannou has a higher finish rate by KO (75%) over his UFC career. Ngannou’s fights typically do not leave the first round which has much to do with his low striking totals as his average fight time is just under 2 rounds.





Ngannou’s striking tendencies are apparent as well, having 72.2% of his landed significant strikes coming to the head of his opponents. With little striking variation, Ngannou aims to finish fights early and is predominantly a headhunter. Averaging less than 3 significant strikes landed to the body per fight his approach is predictable. That being said, he can stop the fight at any given second and will keep the heavyweight champion on high alert throughout the fight.






Throughout Ngannou's last 7 fights he has only attempted 2 takedowns with O being successful while Miocic has attempted 25 over that same span and secured 9 of them. Just as stated earlier in the article, this was a huge factor in their first bout as Miocic was in a position of control for 15 minutes during that encounter.


Prediction


  1. In the case of K/O

* Percentage Over Career


Historically, Ngannou is more likely to end the fight by knockout than Miocic yet both are dangerous when striking as they post over a 50% K/O rate. It is more probable that Ngannou finishes Miocic but the striking averages favor Miocic as well.


2. Takedown Efficiency


Throughout Ngannou's last 7 fights he has only attempted 2 takedowns with 0 being successful while Miocic has attempted 25 over that same span and secured 9 of them. This was a huge factor in their first bout as Miocic was in a position of control for 15 minutes during that encounter.


3. Bookie Odds

*Odds from Caesars Casino&Sportsbook

The oddsmakers slightly favor Ngannou but with numbers so close to being even this fight can go either way.


Video Credits: UFC

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