Anthony Johnson Discusses Sparring That New Heavyweight Contender

Francis Ngannou put the heavyweight division on notice when he knocked out former heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski on Saturday at UFC on Fox 23.

The win boasted Ngannou’s record to 10-1 overall, 5-0 in the UFC with all five of those wins by stoppage.

Not only has Ngannou made a name for himself in the heavyweight division, but he’s put a mark on the MMA world.

In Las Vegas for a media day before UFC 208, UFC 210 headliner Anthony Johnson discussed his experience with the Frenchman.

“I think the hardest I’ve been hit in the gym was…. what’s that beasts name… Francis,” Johnson stated. “He came and trained with us and the first day we trained together when I came to the gym, I think I was getting ready for DC (UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier). I think it was sparring day. Boy, we started and we were sparring and buddy, I hit him one time and I thought I was out of the way and buddy could he hit. I had respect for him but I had more respect for him after the hit. He hit me square on my nose and I’m glad it didn’t break. He really did hit me hard. And that’s when I was like, “Ok, if this guy is hitting me hard and I’m saying WOW and everybody else in the heavyweight division has four ounce gloves on and they are getting hit with those and he’s cracking people. It may not be the best technique, but there’s so much power and so much speed behind it.”

Ngannou’s called out former heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez but hasn’t received a response at this time.