Shavkat Kakhmonov has reacted after being labeled a ‘chump’ by Khamzat Chimaev.
Khamzat Chimaev (11-0 MMA) is just coming off his victory over Gilbert Burns (20-5 MMA) this past weekend at UFC 273. The undefeated Swede is looking to keep his winning streak going, ultimately looking for a title bout.
Shavkat Kakhmonov (15-0 MMA), also undefeated, last fought in February of this year defeating Carlston Harris (17-5 MMA).
Prior to UFC 273, Shavkat was asked about his interest in meeting Khamzat Chimaev in the Octagon saying:
“I don’t know! It doesn’t really matter. Whoever they tell me to fight. If the rankings match right and the UFC makes that fight, I’m gonna do it without hesitation. But it’s not the right time to call him out, cuz he’s got an upcoming fight and might fight for a title potentially. The callouts are unnecessary now. Once I’ll get to him (in the rankings) we’ll fight!”
Following the victory by Khamzat at UFC 273, Shavkat took to Instagram saying (translated to English):
“Shavkat Rakhmonov not impressed with Khamzat Chimaev’s skills”
To which Khamzat responded on Instagram:
“Who’s that chump?!”
Khamzat later deleted the post.
When asked at a Q&A session with fans Rakhmonov was asked about his thoughts on what Khamzat had said, replying (h/t MMANews):
“Let him say it to my face, not in comments. We’ll talk when we see each other. I’ve nothing against him. We’re just opponents and I’m not gonna insult him. I’m not gonna insult his family or nation. We’ll fight one day and then see who’s better.”
When asked by a fan if he was bothered by being referred to as a ‘chump’, Rakhmonov replied that he tries not to focus on such things, it’s just a sign that he’s in Chimaev’s head.
When asked by a fan if he thought Khamzat even knew about him, the Kazakhstani replied:
“Surely, he does! How can he not know?! I’m the biggest fight for him! It’s not Burns or a title. We can fight in the cage or in the streets. If someone has something to tell, we can do it. If someone has ‘questions’ to me, we can do it anywhere.”
Would you like to see Khamzat go up against Rakhmonov in a welterweight bout?