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Ian Machado Garry wants ‘dream opponent’ Khamzat Chimaev: ‘Let me punch the mouth off him’

Ian Machado Garry believes he’s destined for big things in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

UFC 292 saw Ireland’s latest rising star stay unbeaten with a flawless battering of Welterweight victory record-holder, Neil Magny, this past weekend (Aug. 19, 2023). Garry’s dominant unanimous decision win was the 13th straight time he’s gotten his hand raised and his sixth inside the Octagon.

A Top 15-ranked contender ahead of his Magny triumph, the 25-year-old climbed two spots to No. 11 in the official UFC rankings update released after the event. Garry has full confidence he’ll hold gold in the promotion one day and along the way, he hopes to collide with one specific opponent.

“It would have to be in the 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland as my dream venue because they’re never going to go to Croke Park,” Garry told Sporting Post. “And the dream opponent would be me versus Khamzat Chimaev because everyone talks about him like he’s this badman and this boogeyman, but in time I’m going get a chance to lay hands on him. If he’s the baddest man that everyone is afraid of I’m going to show the world what’s up. He’d be my dream opponent in Ireland. I want that f—king wolf. I want that badman. I want to be the baddest man on Earth, and everyone considers it to be him at the moment, but let me punch the mouth off him and we’ll see what’s up.”

Unfortunately for Garry, his hopes of scoring an eventual Chimaev battle look like they’d have to come at Middleweight as “Borz” has moved on from the 170-pound division (for the timebeing). Chimaev returns to action at 185 pounds opposite Paulo Costa at UFC 294 on Oct. 21, 2023, after last submitting Kevin Holland in a 180-pound Catchweight bout in Sept. 2022 (watch highlights). An epic 7.5-pound weight miss led to Chimaev’s original Nate Diaz main event bout getting scrapped and his move back up in weight.

Garry has risen through the Welterweight ranks primarily thanks to his strong striking abilities, but remains aware that he's not yet at his best. In time, he feels he'll be unstoppable after continuing to work with his current support system of notable mixed martial arts (MMA) names.

“I’m not the greatest wrestler in the world,” Garry said. “I’m not the greatest jiu-jitsu practitioner in the world, I’m not the greatest striker in the world, I’m not the greatest MMA fighter in the world ... yet. But, I’m learning from some of the greats.

“I worked with Gilbert Burns and Felipe Pena recently, who are some of the best grapplers the world’s ever seen and world champions in jiu-jitsu,” Garry concluded. “I’ve chopped it up and learned from the likes of Leon Edwards and Stephen Thompson. Henry Hooft and Henry Clemson are amazing striking coaches, amazing people that I can connect with and that help me grow.”

For complete UFC 292: ‘Sterling vs. O’Malley’ results and play-by-play, click HERE.

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