Some people believe that Khamzat Chimaev is on the path to becoming the undisputed UFC welterweight champion and teammate Alexander Gustafsson is one of them.
Chimaev, who is 4-0 under the UFC banner since making his debut in July 2020, has taken the combat sports world by storm during his short stint with the biggest MMA promotion around. While Chimaev still has some competition to get through in the stacked welterweight division he has absolutely demolished all adversaries to date. This includes his recent first-round submission finish over Li Jingliang at UFC 267 this past October.
It’s clear that Khamzat is special, but with killers like Colby Covington, Leon Edwards, Jorge Masvidal, and Gilbert Burns standing in his way of a potential title shot, “Borz” still has some proving to do. If he’s able to get through some of those contenders and score a shot at UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman, Gustafsson believes Chimaev would put “Nigerian Nightmare” to sleep.
“I think he’d put Kamaru Usman to sleep honestly,” Gustafsson told ESPN earlier this week. “I think if he just touches his chin, it’s a big chance that Usman goes to sleep. I like Kamaru Usman, he’s a great champ and he’s just been breaking records and like you know, it’s a pleasure to see him fight because he’s a very good technical, you know I love his jab and his wrestling and you can see that he’s on top, Kamaru Usman. But I just can’t see him take Khamzat’s punches.”
Chimaev, who has also competed at middleweight throughout his MMA career, certainly packs a punch. He slept Gerald Meerschaert with one punch just over a year ago and holds six career knockouts through just 10 total wins. That’s not to say Chimaev would obliterate Usman with a single blow, but the track record is certainly there.
Gustafsson, who has been training with Chimaev for years, believes the 27-year-old contender is simply wired differently. “Mauler,” who is a three-time UFC title challenger in his own right, doesn’t know if he’s seen anyone who dedicates themselves to the game quite like Chimaev does.
“I met a lot of MMA athletes and fighters and all that, and he stands out for sure, because of his dedication,” said Gustafsson. “Because of how he out-trains everybody. There’s nobody that trains like him, nobody. I haven’t seen it and I have been around the world seeing fighters train and having their camps and training for a fight. This guy just doesn’t get tired. He doesn’t feel any pain, just goes through it.”
Only time will tell how long Chimaev can keep up his dominance, but you better believe he’s going to get tested in his next couple of fights.
What do you think, Maniacs? Does Chimaev have the ability to put Usman to sleep?
Let us know in the comments below!