UFC President Dana White has revealed his immediate plans for Khamzat Chimaev, arguably the hottest prospect in the UFC at present.
Chimaev was the breakout star of the UFC’s four-event stint on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi this past July, picking up a pair of stoppage wins over John Phillips at middleweight and Rhys McKee at welterweight in the span of less than two weeks. Ever since, fight fans have been dying to know what will be next for him.
According to White, the promotion is working on a fight for Chimaev on September 19 at the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas. If he wins that, they’re hoping to pair him up with BJJ ace and longtime welterweight contender Demian Maia when the promotion returns to Fight Island later this year. That bout would be the Sweden-based Dagestani’s first with a ranked foe. It could also serve as Maia’s retirement fight, as he’s recently been flirting with the idea of hanging up his gloves.
“He’ll fight here and he’ll fight on Fight Island,” White said of Chimaev after Friday’s UFC Vegas 9 weigh-ins concluded (via MMA Fighting). “This guy wants to—I love that. I love that mentality.”
“We’re working on fight for him here [in Las Vegas], that’s still being worked,” White said. “But we’re talking about him and Demian Maia on Fight Island.”
While White did not divulge who the UFC is planning to match Chimaev up with on September 19, Brazilian publication Combate is reporting he’ll be matched up with Gerald Meerschaert.
Dana White disse que está negociando Demian Maia x Khamzat Chimaev pra Ilha da Luta, mas que antes o russo vai lutar em Las Vegas. Pelo que apurei, o UFC negocia para Chimaev enfrentar Gerald Meerschaert no card do dia 19 de setembro, pelo peso-médio (até 84kg). #feedmma
— Raphael Marinho (@raphamarinho) September 4, 2020
Khamzat Chimaev is currently a perfect 8-0 as a professional mixed martial artist, and is viewed by many as a future champion at both welterweight and middleweight.
Do you think super prospect is capable of getting by both Gerald Meerschaert and Demian Maia before the year has come to an end?