1) That left hook
It wasn’t quite Henry Cooper on Muhammad Ali levels of shocking, but it wasn’t far off, particularly when you consider that the left hook he landed in round three was maybe the first full-blooded left hook Francis Ngannou had ever landed in a professional boxing match.
2) One judge thought Ngannou won
Irrespective of the fact Fury ultimately came away with his unbeaten record intact, one judge (Ed Garner) still decided that Francis Ngannou, on his pro debut, had beaten him by a score of 96-95 after 10 rounds. That, as far as achievements go, is right up there.
3) Superhuman strength
There is a reason boxers often employ mixed martial artists to work with them in training camp and it’s primarily because of the physical strength they bring to clinches and other inside work. This difference in strength was obvious whenever Ngannou and Fury got close.
4) Anything you can do
Not content with throwing left hooks from the orthodox stance, Ngannou also displayed an impressive ability to throw the left hand straight, as a cross, from the southpaw stance. This confused Fury and was an example of Ngannou beating Fury at his own game.
5) No fitness issues
The expectation beforehand was that Ngannou, a hulk of a man who likes to throw hard punches and finish fights early, would at some point blow a gasket and be rendered impotent in the second half of the fight. However, he was every bit as dangerous in the last round as he was in the first.
6) Hunger strike
If you know anything about Francis Ngannou’s life story, you will know that a hunger to succeed and make something of himself has been his primary driving force for a long time. It’s perhaps this hunger that gave him an edge against Fury, a man who, in contrast, seems content with all he has done.
7) The Terminator
Whereas Fury appeared hurt or at least unsettled by every shot Ngannou landed, the same could not be said for Ngannou. In fact, not once was the Cameroonian disturbed in the slightest by anything Fury chucked his way.
8) Panic in the corner
“Are you okay, Tyson?” Fury was asked more than once between rounds by a member of his training team. They knew as well as anyone the difficulties Fury was having against Ngannou and realised, too, that taking a fight seriously only once it had started may have been a mistake.
9) Usyk can wait
All the talk pre-fight was of Tyson Fury fighting Oleksandr Usyk, with only the date to be decided but December 23 looking most likely. However, after the fight, the idea of boxing Usyk was the last thing on Fury’s mind.
10) Ngannou wants to carry on
While beforehand the extent of his commitment to boxing was unclear, Ngannou left no doubt in the aftermath, telling the world he intended to continue stepping into the boxing ring and challenging top heavyweights, despite the fact he is, at 37, a late starter.