Khamzat Chimaev continues to be the welterweight and middleweight boogeyman, the dude no one at 170 or 185 is willing to sign on the dotted line to face. Whether that’s because of money or ranking or business concerns, the result is the same: Khamzat is currently without an opponent for what is supposed to be his first main event on December 19th.
Dan Hardy sat down with Chimaev on Fight Island where he’s cornering teammates to ask him about his fighting future. The first question (which tells you how big the hype is surrounding “Borz”) was regarding when he thought he’d fight for a world title ... and at which weight class.
“I think now, two more fights,” Chimaev said. As for which weight class? “I don’t know. It doesn’t matter for me. Both guys, maybe both same day, both fights, we’ll see.”
But first he’ll need to secure a meaningful fight for December 19th which will propel him up the seemingly sacrosanct rankings.
“I say to Dana White, just give me someone. They say right now ‘This guy not top 10, not top 5,’ Sometime they say nobody knows this guy. Everybody talk about me, how can you say nobody knows Khamzat? I think everybody’s scared. Everybody.”
“They ask me always, my manager calls me and says ‘Want to fight Thompson?’ I say yes. Then they say he don’t want fight,” Khamzat said. “They say Chris Weidman, I say yes. Chris Weidman don’t want fight. Demian Maia don’t want fight. They say Neil Magny, I say doesn’t matter, don’t ask me. Just give me somebody. 19 December they say okay let’s go, 19 December. Then Darren Till say something, I say come to Abu Dhabi. He say ‘I have fight in December,’ I also have fight in December. We can fight here and then in December also.”
Khamzat’s willingness to fight anyone at any time is already legendary, and it wasn’t limited to an unlikely quick scrap with Till. Chimaev also sounded ready to step up should something happen to the Robert Whittaker vs. Jared Cannonier co-main at UFC 254.
“My friend is going to fight here, I come to help him,” he said, explaining his presence in Abu Dhabi. “But Robert Whittaker, he would be a good fight for me. He’s ex-champion. I like this guy but I have to smash this guy. We have to see.”
What’s most likely is Khamzat will stay on track for his December main event and eventually face welterweight champ Kamaru Usman if both men keep winning. What does he think of the current title holder?
“He’s also a fighter, good fighter. But he don’t have that knockout punch like I have,” Chimaev said. “He don’t have wrestling like me. What he going to do? If I do my hard work in the gym, nobody can beat me in a fight.”
What do you think, Maniacs? Are you a “Borz” believer?