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Francis Ngannou Reveals the Reason Why He Ignored Ciryl Gane Backstage, Says It Was Because of Coach Fernand Lopez

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UFC Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou revealed his reason behind ignoring Cyril Gane backstage. Surprisingly, it wasn’t Gane whom Francis ignored rather it was his former coach Fernand Lopez. 

During UFC 268, a video surfaced on the internet of Francis Ngannou ignoring his former coach Fernand Lopez, Cyril Gane, and Nassourfine Lopez. While giving an interview to Daniel Cormier, Francis explained what exactly made him ignore them. He even revealed that it bothered him for doing that to Cyril Gane. 

 

The only thing that bothers me a little bit (was Gane)…I would’ve looked confused. Obviously, as his coach said, he’s naive. I would’ve been confused, too, because if… I walked by Gane, I would say hi. If it’s just him, I’d say, ‘Hi, what’s up?‘”

However, Ngannou wasn’t fine with greeting his former coach Fernand. According to Francis, if he would have said “hi”, then Lopez would have spread some rumors about him by saying something he didn’t. 

“It’s been a couple of years now that he’s out there… I mean, like, yeah, I want to be nice. But when I saw him in that position, I had a few thoughts. I’m like, ‘OK, should I say hi?’ Then I’m like, ‘I don’t know.’ I might get closer and say hi and then somehow, you’ll hear that I said ‘this,’ which is not what I said.” Francis Said.

 

Francis Ngannou didn’t want to give Fernand Lopez the opportunity to spread rumors about him:

Ngannou also told that “Getting close to him was giving an opportunity” to spread rumors about him. Not to mention that Francis said he would have greeted both Cyril and Imavov. But, Lopez is attacking him all the time. Hence, he didn’t find it rational to greet either of them for his own sake.

Getting close to him was giving an opportunity to him. Not only the fact that I’m sure that he didn’t need me to say hi, but it was giving him the opportunity to say something again that I didn’t say. I’d rather stay in the distance. … It’s not like we’re friendly. He’s attacking me all the time. I can’t do that. I don’t feel like it” Added Ngannou. 

Francis Ngannou Fernand Lopez

Rightly so, Fernand has been critical of Francis since he left the MMA factory in Paris in 2019 to join Xtreme Couture. Lopez has claimed several allegations on the champ, be it for not paying gym fees, or snubbing Cyril Gane from getting his UFC contract. So, keeping a distance from him was indeed a sensible choice for the champ.