Khamzat Chimaev: ‘I’m gonna beat all top-10 guys and become champion’

Khamzat Chimaev
Mandatory Credit: Chris Unger – Zuffa LLC

UFC welterweight prospect, Khamzat ‘Borz’ Chimaev has set some notable goals for himself just three-fights deep into his Octagon run ahead of his return this weekend — with sights fixed on taking out each top-10 opponent at 170lbs, before scooping the promotion’s welterweight crown.

Undefeated in his professional career, Chimaev, an alum of Brave CF, is currently 3-0 under the Dana White-led, UFC banner. And makes his return to active competition for the first time in 13-months this weekend at UFC 267 — tackling the #11 ranked contender, Li Jingliang.

Last year saw a blistering start to UFC life for the Chechen-born finisher, which included record-setting stoppages over both John Philips and Rhys McKee — just 10-days apart, before making his North American debut in September.

Featuring on the main card of UFC Vegas 11 before the close of last year, Chimaev, a trainee of AllStars MMA, floored and stopped Roufusport grappler, Gerald Meerschaert in just 17-seconds with a hellacious first round knockout. 

Chimaev was then booked on three separate occasions to share the Octagon with the surging #3 ranked, Leon Edwards, until a positive COVID-19 test result on both sides of the equation, as well as lingering health issues for Chimaev, as a result, forced the shelving of each attempted matchup.

Set to return against the dangerous Jingliang this weekend on ‘Fight Island’ — Chimaev has laid out his blueprints for an eventual tilt at welterweight spoils, which involved a long run through each and every one of the top-10 contenders in the division.

Of course, I will be happy if they (the UFC) give me someone like [Leon Edwards],” Khamzat Chimaev told assembled media. “But I think if he wins this fight (against Jorge Masvidal) he’s supposed to fight for the title. How many win streak now? 10, 9? I respect that. I win this fight, win also one, two, three more fights before the title. I don’t want to jump up [beyond] the guys and have people talk like, ‘This is disrespect,’ I don’t like this talk.

I want to show who I am,” Chimaev said. “I’m gonna beat all the guys in the top-10, 10 fighters, and I’m gonna become champion.” (Transcribed by MMA Fighting)

In regards to the welterweight title, the undisputed crown is up for grabs next weekend at UFC 268 — with reigning division best, Kamaru Usman attempting to secure his fifth successful title defense in a championship rematch against former interim gold holder, Colby Covington. 

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