UFC star Khamzat Chimaev made headlines after headlines this week.
First, he was involved in a backstage scuffle just before the press conference for UFC 279, and after that, he could not meet the weight for his main event against Nate Diaz.
Due to the weight issue, the bout was canceled, and Diaz was rescheduled to face Tony Ferguson.
But while in public Chimaev played the heel it’s not widely known that Chimaev offered Diaz his whole purse if he had agreed to still have a bout with him.
Chimaev missed the weight by 7.5 pounds. After this, Diaz was offered a catchweight which he did not accept. This is especially interesting because White was quoted saying that the Nevada State Athletic Commission wouldn’t have even sanctioned it – and yet they were ok with 170lbs Li Jingliang going up against 10lbs heavier Daniel Rodriguez (though this was changed to catchweight in the interim).
UFC had to make significant changes to their original card, Chimaev was given Holland, and Diaz was booked against Ferguson.
Khamzat made quick work of Holland and earned a submission victory in just two minutes. Diaz also got a submission victory in his last UFC bout.
Chimaev estimated that his entire purse would be around $2 million mark.
Chimaev himself felt disappointed after the cancellation. He explained
“I’m not happy with the change, my weight wasn’t that big that it wouldn’t work but the doctor said I had to [stop] it,” Chimaev said.
“I was mad as well, I was thinking what was going to happen. I wanted to fight Diaz, I said I didn’t care about my money, I said give all my money to that guy and let him just fight with me. He was talking about being a gangster, but he shouldn’t care about the weight. I wanted to fight him all along. Diaz has to thank god that he didn’t fight me.”
Chimaev further shared his thoughts and said he might make a move to light heavyweight, but his coach wanted him to stay in the welterweight and be the best guy there. Chimaev said he would talk to his coach and took his opinion about the future division he should go for.
Chimaev stated that he listened to his coach and moved to his coach’s suggested division.
Chimaev was also struggling to make weight before his bout against Li Jingliang. Somehow, he made the contracted weight in that one – but barely. The crowd did not take his weight failure lightly and heavily booed him during the weigh-in. A chorus of boos also welcomed him during his entrance at UFC 279.
Chimaev said he did not care what fans were thinking as he had no concern with them. He said,
“Who cares about that s***? I don’t care I care about my family. I care about my career, I care about my money. One day they’re with me, one day they’re not with me. I’m a real guy and I like real people, not the fake people who go one way then the other way.”