If you are one of the fans who has been anxiously awaiting the welterweight clash between Khamzat Chimaev and Leon Edwards, you are going to have to wait even longer. This is due to the fact that the Chechen has been forced to withdraw from the contest.
Bursting onto the larger MMA scene this year, Chimaev has put himself in one of the most unique positions ever seen in the UFC. After going 3-0 this year, utterly destroying everyone that the UFC put in front of him at both 170lb and 185lb, he was booked to fight number 3 ranked Edwards. The contest was originally expected to main event a Fight Night card in December, but positive COVID-19 tests forced it to be scrapped.
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Khamzat Chimaev Forced Out
After its initial cancellation, Leon Edwards vs Khamzat Chimaev was rebooked and expected to headline one of the three UFC cards in one week, expected to kick off the year on Fight Island. Unfortunately rumors emerged on Monday, suggesting that Khamzat was no longer competing in this event. These rumors were then confirmed by multiple sources, who say that the undefeated prospect has been forced to withdraw from the bout due to undisclosed reasons.
“Khamzat Chimaev is rumored to be out of his Jan. 20 fight against Leon Edwards. Chimaev has been replaced as ‘TBD’ on the UFC production prompt. The UFC has also removed the booking from their website.”
At this time, it is unclear if the UFC will be looking to book Leon Edwards vs Khamzat Chimaev for a third time. The contest was already somewhat unusual and controversial to begin with, so it does not exactly make the most sense for it to become the next Khabib vs Tony just yet. That being said, the UFC seems to be putting a lot of energy into promoting the Chechen, so anything could be possible in the end.