Khamzat Chimaev casts doubt on his fight with Kamaru Usman actually being a title eliminator bout

By Susan Cox - October 20, 2023

Khamzat Chimaev is casting doubt on his fight with Kamaru Usman actually being a title eliminator bout.

Khamzat Chimaev

UFC 294 will see the undefeated Khamzat Chimaev (12-0 MMA) going up against Kamaru Usman (20-3 MMA) tomorrow, Saturday, October 21st, at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi. The co-main event will see ‘Borz’ and ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ in a middleweight bout.

Chimaev, 29, last fought and defeated Kevin Holland (25-10 MMA) in September of last year at UFC 279.

Usman, 36, will be entering the Octagon coming off back-to-back losses to Leon Edwards (21-3 MMA) at UFC 278 and UFC 286. The ultimate goal for Usman is to get back in the win column by handing Chimaev his first loss in the cage.

UFC CEO Dana White announced just last week that the fight between Kamaru Usman and Khamzat Chimaev would be a title eliminator, with the victor facing UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland in his first title defence.

During an appearance at UFC 294 media day this past Wednesday, Chimaev reacted to the talk of a middleweight championship opportunity waiting in the wings, by saying:

“Actually, I don’t think about this (title) fight right now. I just focus on Usman. They promised me, like I said before, ‘Gilbert Burns, if you win against this guy, you’re gonna fight for the title.’ Since then, I wait two years. I fight again as well but didn’t get that title. So I don’t know what’s going on… I’m going after all heads in the UFC… If I finish everyone, stop everyone, they have to give me all belts.”

Khamzat Chimaev did fight and defeat Gilbert Burns (22-6 MMA) in April of 2022 at UFC 273.  Following that victory, there was no title fight in the wings so it’s no wonder ‘Borz’ is skeptical of the ‘title eliminator’ tag at UFC 294.

Will you be watching tomorrow? Do you think Usman can defeat Chimaev or will it be the other way around?

Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!


Khamzat Chimaev UFC UFC 294