Tyson Fury vs. Francis Ngannou First Look Betting Preview, Odds & Picks

profile image of David Manyun
Britain's Tyson Fury reacts after the referee stops the fight against Britain's Derek Chisora during their WBC heavyweight title boxing match, at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in east London, on December 3, 2022. Ben Stansall / AFP

Boxing Pick: Over 5½ Rounds (-110) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

BetOnline logo
Over 5½ Rounds (-110)
Visit Site

Tyson Fury will make his long-awaited comeback to the boxing ring this weekend, facing off against Francis Ngannou in Saudi Arabia.

This highly anticipated match has been dubbed the ‘Battle of the Baddest,’ pitting WBC champion Fury against Ngannou, a former UFC heavyweight champion. It marks Fury’s return after an absence of nearly a year and Ngannou for two years, as “The Gypsy King” and “The Predator” collide in the biggest combat sports crossover bout since McGregor vs. Mayweather.

Read on for our complete betting guide, taking a first look at Fury vs. Ngannou, including updated betting odds and our free expert boxing betting picks.

Tyson Fury vs. Francis Ngannou

Heavyweight Main Event Bout

Saturday, October 28, 2023 – 02:00 PM EDT at Boulevard Hall in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Tyson “The Gypsy King” Fury

  • Professional Record: 33-1-0 (24 KOs)
  • Age: 35
  • Born: England
  • Height: 6’9″
  • Reach: 85.0″
  • Stance: Orthodox

Fury, the 35-year-old brute from Manchester, England, holds an impressive record of 33 wins, 1 draw, and 24 knockouts. Recently, he secured two consecutive victories by stopping his opponents. In April 2022, he achieved a sixth-round TKO against Dillian Whyte, followed by a 10th-round TKO against Derek Chisora in December 2022.

Initially, Fury was set to face Oleksandr Usyk, the unified heavyweight champion, in a highly anticipated bout for the undisputed heavyweight title. However, negotiations for the fight fell through in March, and here we are, another circus show to dampen the progression of professional boxing.

One of the Greatest vs. An Amateur  

Regarding heavyweight boxers, Fury has already etched his name into the history book of boxing legends. It’s arguable that he’s the greatest ever to do it, so naturally, he’s taking a lot of heat for opting to fight an MMA professional instead of building his legacy versus legitimate opposition.

It’s clear that Fury is searching for nothing more than a huge payday, but in the famous words of “The Gypsy King” himself: “Legacy doesn’t pay the bills or feed my kids,” and you can’t argue with that.

Tyson Fury Boxing Accomplishments

  • WBC heavyweight champion (2020-present)
  • Unified heavyweight champion (2015-2016)
  • Two-time Ring magazine title holder (2015-2022)
  • IBO heavyweight champion (2015)
  • No.1-ranked heavyweight boxer by BoxRec and ESPN

Tyson Fury Best Available Odds: -1500 at BetOnline

Francis “The Predator” Ngannou

  • Professional Record: 0-0 (Pro Boxing Debut)
  • Age: 37
  • Born: Cameroon
  • Height: 6’4″
  • Reach: 83″
  • Stance: Orthodox

Ngannou, originally from Cameroon but now residing in Las Vegas, secured the UFC heavyweight title by defeating Stipe Miocic at UFC 260 in March 2021. He successfully defended his championship against Ciryl Gane at UFC 270 in January 2022. A year later, Ngannou parted ways with the UFC and entered into an agreement with the PFL, which permitted him to compete in boxing as well.

The Toughest Heavyweight Boxing Debut in History

On paper, this man is a monster. Sports scientists recorded the hardest punch in combat sports history thrown by Ngannou, which has been compared to being hit by a small car. He didn’t obtain the UFC heavyweight strap overnight, but his climb to the top rankings was undoubtedly an inspirational journey for those following along.

But now, he’s entering a whole new world. Ngannou trained in boxing as a teenager and for a small period during his twenties but switched to professional mixed martial arts. He owns zero experience in the professional setting of heavyweight boxing, and as the sports betting odds suggest, he could be in for a rude awakening.   

Francis Ngannou Best Available Odds: +912 at Bookmaker

Fury vs. Ngannou Analysis & Betting Prediction

How can Fury beat Ngannou?

With a height of 6’9″ and an 85-inch reach, he always has the option to remain at a distance using his jab, making it extremely difficult for opponents to land any significant blows. At the same time, he delivers powerful combinations of his own. And for once, believe it or not, Ngannou will be fighting as the smaller man.

However, Fury is not just a defensive fighter. There are moments when he chooses to showcase his aggressive side, as seen in his second fight against Deontay Wilder. During these instances, he utilizes his size advantage to advance towards his opponents, overwhelming them with relentless attacks and forcing them into submission.

The long game will work for Fury, and it’s almost pointless mentioning the plethora of variables that favor him because he owns too much experience as a heavyweight boxer for Francis to match him from a technical standpoint.

How can Ngannou defeat Fury?

Analyzing Ngannou’s boxing abilities is challenging due to the distinct nature of MMA. However, he demonstrates proficiency in his right-handed stance and effectively utilizes his left hand, particularly with uppercuts. Ngannou also transitions between stances during stand-up exchanges and frequently employs combinations of punches instead of relying solely on single strikes.

Ultimately, pressure and power combined with an unorthodox (amateur) approach could see Ngannou catch Fury for a shock knockout. But if we don’t bet on “what ifs,” and technically, he’s outclassed in every facet of the sweet science.

The Betting Picks & Odds

The available odds at the top sportsbooks seem juiced at -1500, but let’s be honest: the difference in skill level presents a moneyline price that is represented accurately.

We have no choice but to look for prop bets in this contest, and it’s almost a guessing game of which round Fury will claim victory. That said, we should assume he doesn’t want to stick around Ngannou’s power for too long, thus making a 5, 6, or 7th-round KO/TKO a viable base for our weekend boxing wagers.

Given the fact that Fury will likely pepper Ngannou from the outside and play with his food for a few rounds at least, and with the Cameroonian’s notable durability in MMA, backing the over 5 ½ rounds at -115 is an additional wager to consider alongside the round prop bets.

Boxing Pick: Fury by KO/TKO in Rounds 5 to 6 (+250) [1u returns 2.5u profit] at BetOnline

Boxing Pick: Fury by KO/TKO in Rounds 7 to 8 (+400) [1u returns 4u profit] at BetOnline    

Boxing Pick: Over 5½ Rounds (-110) [1.10u returns 1u profit] at BetOnline

*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.