Khamzat Chimaev willing to challenge for the 205 belt at UFC 282: “I’m ready for them”
Khamzat Chimaev wants to kick off 2023 with two exciting fights in middleweight and welterweight, but as if that’s not enough excitement for fans, the rising star is also willing to move up two divisions for UFC 282 in December!
“Borz” Chimaev is open to any opponent, as long as they can fight soon. To hurry things along, he’s suggested two exciting matchups to the UFC matchmakers: first a title fight against the newly crowned middleweight king Alex Pereira, and then a long awaited match against No. 2 ranked welterweight Colby Covington. Ideally, he wants to have both opponents defeated and a middleweight belt around his waist by April next year.
“Before, I was thinking if Kamaru Usman wins his fight, I will fight with him next,” Chimaev told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. “But he lost. And I was thinking if (Israel) Adesanya won his fight, who’s he going to fight? There’s only me. And he lost as well. Now (Pereira and Adesanya) want to rematch in March; I don’t know what they’re going to do.”
“So I said to Sean Shelby and Dana (White) as well: I’m ready for Pereira in Brazil. Directly after that, March, if Colby wants to fight, I’d take my title and I’d go down to 170 and fight Colby as well.”
With that said, no concrete plans are in place as of yet. Furthermore, an immediate rematch between Adesanya and Pereira looks increasingly likely, especially considering how their recent fight at UFC 281 played out. That could mean that Covington is currently first in line to take on the Chechen wolf.
“For me, it actually doesn’t matter. Just give me some fight and let’s fight. I’m ready. I’m ready for both divisions as well. If (Jiri) Prochazka and (Glover) Teixeira, their fight, if somebody gets changed or something happens there, I’m ready for them as well.”
Chimaev believes that Covington will be a much easier fight for him than Gilbert Burns, whom he defeated at UFC 274 in April.
“Colby is not the same kind of guy,” he continued. “Colby, I can take him down, submit him, I can knock him out. (Kamaru) Usman dropped him. (Jorge) Masvidal dropped him. So why not me? If I punch him, he will not come up. He will sleep there a long time.”
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