“Boxing is not a real sport,” Sonnen said on his YouTube channel. “That hurts me. That hurts me to say, but there’s no way to deny that.”
Sonnen, a former UFC title challenger, made those comments after he saw Ngannou lose to Fury with a split decision in a fight in which he scored the only knockdown and, to many, did enough in subsequent rounds to get his hand raised.
“A man’s body of work deserves to be recognized, and it deserves to be recognized accurately,” Sonnen said. “That is disgusting, what they just did to him. Anybody would’ve been wise to predict that that was going to happen. There was no chance that boxing was going to allow him to come in and get that win if it went to a decision.”
But on top of the criticism in the scoring of the fight, Sonnen was surprised to see Ngannou, who was making his boxing debut, stay competitive with Fury, the WBC heavyweight champion and one of the best pound-for-pound boxers today – and arguably beat him.
Sonnen also noted Ngannou’s lack of experience, lack of inactivity due to injury.
“This is a heartbreaking thing for me, not because of whatever weirdness I’ve got going on with Francis. It’s a heartbreaking thing for me because my entire life, I have respected boxing,” Sonnen said. “And to find out that boxing is fake, I don’t mean the decision was corrupted, you cannot be a real sport. You cannot be by any means be a real sport.
“This is the second time I’ve seen the best in the world in boxing – the absolute best, in their prime, in boxing – get beaten up by a guy with zero experience. One of them was a drunk cokehead and still beat the hell out of the greatest boxer that never lost before or after. And then you get a gentleman who’s at least 37 years old, who has never done the sport and trains full time in an MMA gym.”
For more on the matchup, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for Fury vs. Ngannou.