Fresh off his record-setting back-to-back wins on UFC Fight Island, UFC newcomer Khamzat Chimaev has called for another swift turnaround, and it looks like UFC president Dana White is ready to grant “Borz” his wish.
The Chechen-born Swede dominated Welsh middleweight John Phillips on his octagon debut, then 10 days later dropped back down to his natural weight class of welterweight and produced an even more clinical display to defeat former Cage Warriors welterweight star Rhys McKee without taking a single punch.
It gave Chimaev a spectacular start to his UFC career and instantly propelled him to notoriety, with his vow to “smash them all” when he faces the division’s top names already resonating with fans and media alike.
The unbeaten 26-year-old is in no mood to sit and admire his work, however, and has called on the UFC to find him another opponent as soon as possible. And in his latest interview with ESPN, UFC president Dana White says he’s ready to give him what he wants.
“The guy is so dominant, so confident, wants to continue to fight every weekend. I love it. I love guys with that mentality,” gushed White.
“I love how talented this guy is. We threw the hottest prospect out of the U.K. at him and that kid is a badass. That kid is a legit great fighter. He made it look like he didn’t belong there.
“The kid is legit. He’s real and he knows it and I love it.”
Chimaev spoke to White and asked the UFC chief to book him for another fight in August, and White said he’s looking to make that request a reality as the UFC looks to build the super-keen, ultra-talented welterweight into a rapid-fire contender in the already-competitive 170-pound division.
“He said he wanted to fight and I said, ‘Done. I’ll make it happen,'” White said.
“He wants to fight now again in August. I’m going to get him what he wants.”
The problem with Chimaev is that he’s a newcomer, he’s unranked and therefore offers very little upside to any of the UFC’s established contenders, who would be putting their own status at risk for very little reward if they signed to face him.
It means working out where to pitch Chimaev in the division, and how to find a fighter prepared to face him, is the big challenge facing White and his matchmakers as they try to find a suitable next matchup for him.
And White even hinted that Chimaev, who has had just two fights in the UFC, might be talented enough to swim with the big fish at the top of the division – including reigning welterweight champion Kamaru Usman – immediately.
“That’s what we’re trying to figure out,” White admitted.
“We were sitting in here this morning trying to figure out what we think is next. If you ask this kid, he’s ready to fight Usman. You know what I mean?
“Is he ready for Usman? The way he looks, who knows? Maybe.”