UFC’s Bo Nickal Claps Back At Khamzat Chimaev, Vows To ‘Rag Doll’ Undefeated Star In Future Fight

Nickal responds to Chimaev's criticism around UFC 300 performance.

Nickal Chimaev
(via @nobickal1, @khamzat_chimaev - Instagram)

Bo Nickal has finally captured Khamzat Chimaev‘s attention.

A lot of eyeballs have been on the NCAA wrestling champion ever since he made his pro MMA debut less than two years ago. Nickal is currently undefeated at 6-0, having entered the UFC in 2023 after three-straight wins. 

Chimaev Calls ‘BS’ on Nickal’s Wrestling Credentials

In his latest appearance, the standout wrestler submitted a more-experienced Cody Brundage in two rounds on the main card of UFC 300. While the fight was dominant for Nickal from start to finish, not everybody was left impressed by his performance and that includes middleweight boogeyman Chimaev.

“This wrestling was big bulls***,” Chimaev reacted to Nickal’s fight on ‘X’.

Similar to Nickal, Chimaev had his own meteoric rise to super stardom, absolutely dominating his opponents with his wrestling and even impressing with his power, once knocking out Gerald Meerschaert in 17 seconds back in 2020.

‘We’re Gonna Make That Fight Happen’

While their careers couldn’t be farther apart at this point with Chimaev fighting former champ Robert Whittaker next and Nickal, who’s just getting started, the rising star foresees a fight with Chimaev happening someday.

“It’s good. I love it. I think the fact that he’s recognizing it and I think he sees what’s coming, too,” Nickal responded to Chimaev’s jab on ‘The MMA Hour‘. “I think that it’s good for everybody, good for me, good for him, good for the sport. So we’re gonna make that fight happen.”

Nickal Adds, ‘There’s Levels To This’

Still getting his wits about him in his transition to MMA from collegiate wrestling and growing each and every day, Nickal negates the 13-0 fighter’s criticism with a shot of his own. 

“In response to that, who are you fighting at 5-0, bro?” Nickal said of Chimaev. “Some random dude in Europe. Like I’m fighting in the UFC on UFC 300. So there’s levels to this and I think that people just need to get to know me. The more they get to know me, the more they’re gonna realize that, hey, like I’m that guy and there’s nothing anybody else can do about that. I wouldn’t be surprised if [or] when we fight I’m like a -1000 favorite, the same as I have been in all these other fights.”

Prediction For Future Collision Course?

As for how a potential fight between the two wrestle-heavy middleweights goes, Bo Nickal doesn’t think Khamzat Chimaev is anything too special or different from what he has seen before. Knowing Chimaev is a steeper challenge, that doesn’t stop the unranked contender from claiming he’d have his way with ‘Borz’ on the ground.

“I think I do very similarly to him, what I did to this last guy, take him down, rag doll him, throw him around. He is not a big 85’er. He gets tired. So, is his first round gonna be a little better, more competitive? Probably. But if that fight’s five rounds, I don’t think he makes it five rounds.

“If we’re being honest and that’s to me kind of a general assessment. Will it be tough at the beginning? Is he gonna come at me? Absolutely. But I don’t think he’s gonna be able to really hurt me or do anything that inflicts so much damage that I’m not gonna be able to just widen the gap on him as the fight continues.”

The yet-to-be-beaten Khamzat Chimaev is slated to face Robert Whittaker at UFC Saudi Arabia in his toughest test to date. Bo Nickal says he could care less about the fight itself but predicts it’ll be a ‘bigger fight’ between him and Chimaev, if he’s able to take care of business against Whittaker on June 22.

Published on April 18, 2024 at 2:23 pm
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