Chimaev inks new UFC contract, possibly explaining the year long break

Khamzat Chimaev has just signed a new UFC contract that could potentially see his earnings reach a remarkable $20 million. This milestone signifies a significant turning point in Chimaev’s already impressive career. His journey to stardom was marked by a series of awe-inspiring victories that resonated with fans worldwide. However, Chimaev’s notable absence from the UFC cage for nearly a year raised eyebrows and triggered a flurry of speculations within the MMA community.

While some skeptics entertained the idea of a secret USADAviolation, the real story appears to be far more intriguing. It seems that Chimaev’s hiatus was a result of contractual negotiations. Reportedly, he was unwilling to commit to a contract that fell short of his expectations.

The UFC is well-known for offering relatively modest financial incentives to its stars. Additionally, the promotion has a reputation for never allowing contracts to expire. Instead, they often sideline stars when they are nearing the final bout of their contracts. This is a strategic move that keeps the talent under their exclusive control. This maneuver can put stars in a challenging position since they are essentially bound to the UFC. If the promotion doesn’t offer them fights, they have few alternative career options.

However, Khamzat Chimaev had some powerful cards up his sleeve. Notably, he enjoyed support from influential backers and recently made a strategic decision to change his nationality to the United Arab Emirates. This tactical move was aimed at improving his training conditions and overall quality of life.

The news of Chimaev’s new contract initially surfaced through ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. While the specific terms and financial figures remain confidential, the use of the term “long-term” suggests that Chimaev has secured a substantial contract.

Given the UFC’s history of structuring fighter contracts around even numbers, it is reasonable to assume that his upcoming fight at UFC 294 is included in this new deal. While exact financial details remain undisclosed, rumors and reports have suggested a potential earnings range of around $3 million per fight. This estimate aligns with Chimaev’s previously mentioned goal of earning $20 million over seven fights, a revelation made during an interview with reporter Nina Drama.

His manager, Majdi Shammas, has expressed optimism about the future without disclosing specific contractual terms. With a co-main event victory at UFC 294 likely translating into a shot at the middleweight title.