Dana White claims Jon Jones demanded $30m to fight Francis Ngannou and insists Derrick Lewis is next
Dana White insists Jon Jones wants the Francis Ngannou fight, but only if he is guaranteed $30million.
Instead, the UFC President admitted it is likely Derrick Lewis will get the next shot at the newly crowned heavyweight champion.
Ngannou exacted his revenge on Stipe Miocic at UFC 260 last month to propel himself to superstardom after grasping UFC gold.
However, his next opponent remains unclear – perhaps because of his devastating finish against Miocic – although fans have clamoured for Jones.
The former light-heavyweight champion vacated his belt to pursue his dream of becoming a two-weight champion and quash Khabib Nurmagomedov’s claims to be the pound-for-pound best of this era.
Despite publicly stating his desire to fight ‘The Predator’ and claim his belt, White claims ‘Bones’ has priced himself out of the fight.
“He’s [Jones] talking he wants $30 million guaranteed,” White told Bill Simmons. “These guys all share in the pay-per-view… so he will share in the profits of the fight.
“That’s how it works; that’s how you run a business and you don’t go broke. We tried to work with Jon and we eventually have to move on.”
Ngannou also wants to fight Jones, praising the 33-year-old immediately after his fight in Las Vegas whilst Miocic was barely regaining consciousness on the canvas beside him.
But a rematch with Lewis makes sense for the division (if not the fans) as Lewis holds a win over the current champion from their stale affair in 2018.
But White told Yahoo: “It’s probably going to be ‘The Black Beast’. At the end of the day, Derrick Lewis and Ngannou is the fight. That’s the fight to make right now.
“Derrick Lewis is a heavyweight; he’s been fighting at heavyweight. He’s earned this shot (against Ngannou),” he continued. “He’s got a win over him. It’s the fight to make.”