Middleweight veteran Gerald Meerschaert may lose more than just a fight tomorrow night (Sat., Sept. 19, 2020) at UFC Vegas 11 live on ESPN+ from inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, as “GM3” is set to meet rising prospect Khamzat Chimaev in main card action.
Meerschaert, who is coming off a TKO loss to Ian Heinisch this past June, is a major underdog entering the 185-pound affair. In fact, UFC is already planning on a Chimaev vs. Demian Maia matchup later this year on “Fight Island,” almost acknowledging that Meerschaert is expected to lose this weekend in Vegas.
As you may have imagined,Meerschaert isn’t happy about being overlooked by his opponent and the promotion that employs him. To show is confidence leading into this weekend the middleweight fighter made a bet with Chimaev during their heated exchange at UFC Vegas 11’s pre-fight press conference (full replay HERE).
“If you choke me out, I’ll find a black belt and give it to you – how about that?” Meerschaert told Chimaev.
Chimaev, who dominated his first two Octagon outings during a 10-day span back in July, is hands down the hottest prospect in the sport. The undefeated welterweight/middleweight fighter has already earned the support of UFC president Dana White and is looking to bring his UFC stock to another level this weekend against Meerschaert.
“You lose your fights,” Chimaev told Meerschaert at the press conference. “You are like friend of Conor. What is his name? Artem Lobov. How many times you lose your fights?”
“Oh, I’ve lost quite a few fights,” agreed Meerschaert. “I’m 31-13.”
“You think you’re a black belt?” asked Chimaev. “Jack Hermansson, he doesn’t have a black belt. Why did he choke you out?”
“Some times you lose when you fight tough guys, man,” responded Meerschaert.
“I have blue belt,” Chimaev said. “I’m going to choke you out. ... You’re about to give your black belt to me.”
While everybody is talking about the rise of Chimaev and his dominant abilities inside of the cage it would be foolish to sleep on the skill set of Meerschaert. Since making his Octagon debut less than four years ago “GM3” has recorded five submission wins as a member of the 185-pound class. That total is good for a first place tie with Maia and Antonio Carlos Junior for the most submission wins in UFC middleweight history.
Despite his accolades, Meerschaert is not gaining the respect he deserves, especially from Chimaev. The 26-year-old prospect doesn’t think a step up in competition will be too much to handle and is already calling for a finish over “GM3.”
“Train harder, not talk,” he said. “‘I am jiu-jitsu, I am better.’ What the f*ck.”
“I am tied for the most submissions in the middleweight division,” Meerschaert replied. “So yeah, I think I deserve that black belt.”
“If I choke you out, you are finished with this sport,” Chimaev added.
UFC Vegas 11 will be headlined by a welterweight grudge match featuring former UFC champion Tyron Woodley, who is trying to end a two-fight losing streak, and former title challenger Colby Covington.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 11 fight card HERE, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” undercard bouts at 5 p.m. ET, followed by the ESPN+ main card start time at 8 p.m. ET.