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Khamzat Chimaev says he could move to light heavyweight, beat UFC champ Blachowicz

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Don’t be surprised if Khamzat Chimaev takes a fight at 205-pounds at some point in his UFC career.

Khamzat Chimaev after defeating Rhys McKee in July 2020
Khamzat Chimaev after defeating Rhys McKee in July 2020
Handout Photo-USA TODAY Sports

After winning fights at welterweight and middleweight in the UFC, breakout star Khamzat Chimaev isn’t ruling out a move to 205-pounds.

Chimaev (9-0) set the record for last year for the fastest time between UFC wins, picking up two victories in just 10 days. Three decisive wins in 2020 against John Philips, Rhys McKee and Gerald Meerschaert led to Chimaev being booked to fight top welterweight contender Leon Edwards. That fight fell through on three occasions due to both fighters suffering from COVID-19.

After overcoming a battle with lingering symptoms of COVID that placed doubts on his fighting future, Chimaev is eager to return to the cage at whatever weight class.

“To me it doesn’t matter,” Chimaev told ESPN (h/t MMA Fighting). “Two weight classes waiting for me, [185] or [170], I can go fight [205 pounds]. I did sparring with the guys who are, like top-10 at [205 pounds]. I don’t want to say the names for these guys, but the guys know when they did spar with me what’s happening there.

“I can beat Blachowicz too. Israel [Adesanya] too, he lose with, like, wrestling against Blachowicz. Blachowicz is not a wrestler. I don’t know people, how they think about it. Of course, I didn’t fight for a long time, I don’t have so many fights, but I know who I am. I just have to show it. Now I’m back. Give me somebody, doesn’t matter. For me, it doesn’t matter. I’ll fight with everybody. When I’m healthy, I’ll fight anybody, everybody. It doesn’t matter, Brock Lesnar.”

Chimaev’s confidence from fighting at a heavier weight class comes from training with teammates Alexander Gustafsson and Ilir Latifi at the Allstars Training Center in Stockholm.

“In gym, we spar with a lot of guys, we change all the time, and my sparring partners they weigh more than me. Alex, like 100 kilos, more, 110. Ilir. I spar with these guys. If I spar with these monsters, I’m going to kill everybody in my weight class.”