Khamzat Chimaev shares his thoughts on newly crowned UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland: “He works hard, deserves it”

By Harry Kettle - September 25, 2023

UFC star Khamzat Chimaev has praised Sean Strickland following his recent middleweight title triumph at UFC 293.

Sean Strickland, UFC, Bonus, UFC 293

Earlier this month, Sean Strickland shocked the world. He defeated Israel Adesanya to become the new UFC middleweight champion, and he did so pretty convincingly. Now, with the future uncertain, many see the 185-pound division as one of the most unpredictable in all of mixed martial arts.

Of course, Strickland is going to have more than a few people chasing him for that crown in the months ahead – including Khamzat Chimaev.


Ahead of his clash with Paulo Costa at UFC 294, ‘Borz’ was asked about Strickland’s championship victory.

Chimaev praises Strickland

“Smash that guy [Costa], then it doesn’t matter if it will by Izzy [Adesanya] or Strickland or somebody else,” he said. “We coming for them. Strickland! Coming for him.”

“He works hard, deserves it,” Chimaev said. “The guy is always in the gym. Now he got the belt. He has a good coach, good team. I’ve been there training with that guy. They deserve that belt. He has been active, fights with everybody.”

“I don’t know why the guys [at UFC] are waiting,” he said, shaking his head. “Give that chance to me! They are hiding that belt from me. Anyway, like I said: when I smash everybody, they has to give that belt to me.”

Quotes via MMA Mania

Past footage of Chimaev and Strickland certainly seems to indicate that they have a lot of respect for one another. If they square off in the Octagon, it’d be interesting to see how their two styles mesh together.

Would you be interested in seeing Sean Strickland defend his UFC title against Khamzat Chimaev? Let us know your thoughts on this, BJPENN Nation!


Khamzat Chimaev Sean Strickland UFC