- Daniel Cormier said he was told that Khamzat Chimaev’s next fight will be at middleweight
- DC weighed in on the Chechen fighter’s chances of finding success at the 185-pound division
The MMA community, as well as the media, certainly can’t get enough of Khamzat Chimaev. Former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker recently told us that “Borz” can compete with the top 5 at middleweight. Apparently, former UFC champ-champ Daniel Cormier sees the same thing too.
Borz will take another 185-pounder?
Speaking on his ESPN MMA show, DC first revealed that Chimaev’s coach informed him that following the catchweight fight with Kevin Holland at UFC 279, the Chechen fighter’s next fight will be against a middleweight once again.
“You know what’s crazy is [Chimaev’s] coach Andreas Michael said yesterday the next one will be at middleweight because he loves everything about the process but the weight cut he just came flat out and said it.”
DC backs Khamzat to beat the best guys at middleweight
As for how things will play out for Chimaev at the 185-pound division, Cormier said that the move makes sense as the current champion Israel Adesanya has been dominating the weight class.
“OK but that leads to my question… well Israel Adesanya gets through Alex Pereira, he’s starting to lap his division, why wouldn’t a very fresh new guy in Khamzat Chimaev be welcomed that middleweight? and he will,” Cormier stressed.
Cormier added that looking at the current top 5 in the division, he sees Chimaev getting heavily favored because no one among those guys have proven that they can deal with Khamzat’s fighting style.
“So it’s like because I always wonder, when I look at these guys like Chimaev that dominate the way that they do I always ask myself this: when I put him against Robert Whittaker do you favor him? Paulo Costa, do you favor him? Dude, if he fought Alex Pereira, he would be a massive favorite because of the way that he fights,” he pointed out.
“Because Pereira is a striker, he hasn’t been in the game long enough to defend takedowns. It’s like how many of those guys would you favor Khamzat Chimaev to beat? And when you answer that question, it’s many of them,” he continued. “Because of his fighting style and we saw it on full display with Kevin Holland, who at one point, was in the top 10 at middleweight. So the guy is a very viable contender. So right now you just take him out of welterweight, where he’s the No. 3 guy in the world and you drop him in the middleweight and he’s probably somewhere in the top 10 right now… It’s just a matter of convincing a guy when they’ve had that much success at one weight class that he needs to go up.”
If DC is right, then it will be interesting to see who the UFC will pick to face Chimaev in his return to middleweight.