Ali Kadyrov, the son of Chechen dictator Ramzan Kadyrov made his professional mixed martial arts debut on Friday with undefeated UFC welterweight Khamzat Chimaev in his corner.
Kadyrov, who was recently seen chumming up next to UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje, made his pro debut at Absolute Championship Akhmat 15o. Emanating from the CSKA Arena in the Russian capital, Kadyrov scored a first-round TKO over fellow debutant Islam Akbarov.
— Pelunaton (@pelunaton) December 23, 2022
Despite being his pro debut, he is no stranger to combat sports, competing in several boxing matches including a controversial run at the Time of Legends-7 tournament in 2021. Kadyrov emerged victorious in the tournament, but Chechen human rights defenders were quick to question the result, suggesting that coaches and tournament organizers were the ones behind Kadyrov’s victories.
Ali Kadyrov spent time preparing for his pro-MMA debut at AllStars MMA in Sweden alongside No. 3 ranked welterweight Khamzat Chimaev and former UFC bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt.
Kadyrov Has Disturbingly Close Ties to Multiple UFC Stars
Of course, Ali is the son of the Head of the Chechen Republic, Ramzan Kadyrov. The much-maligned Chechen dictator has regularly been accused of multiple human rights violations including kidnappings, assassinations, and the purging of LGBTQ community members in the republic.
MMA fans have come to know Kadyrov for his close ties to multiple combat sports stars. Recently, Kamaru Usman, Henry Cejudo, and Justin Gaethje came under fire for accepting his invitation to fire weapons at a military training facility in Chechnya.
Gaethje quickly went on the offensive saying that he “never met the guy” though confirming that he had accepted the invitation to a birthday party for the dictator’s son.