Khamzat Chimaev and Gilbert Burns went to war at UFC 273, battering each other across three rounds for a Fight of the Year contender match. In the end, it was Chimaev who had his hand raised, with all three judges giving him 29-28 scores.
Prior to the Burns fight, Chimaev had never taken any significant damage in his other UFC fights. Across his first four fights, he had a total strike advantage of 254-2. That changed against Gilbert Burns, who statistically outstruck Chimaev 141-124.
On the latest episode of Weighing In, legendary referee 'Big' John McCarthy declared it was good to finally see Chimaev properly tested. McCarthy said:
"Chimaev proved a lot, because he's never been pushed. Sometimes when you get pushed, you don't know til it happens. He got pushed, and it was 1-1 going into that third round. I thought Gilbert Burns had won that second round, hurt him, put him down. Going into the third round it was even and Chimaev could have folded. But nope, he came out, performed beautifully. I thought his jab was the difference in the fight. His ability to land that jab consistently, even put Burns down in the first round with that jab. The jab was a big difference."
Watch John McCarthy and Josh Thomson discuss the Khamzat Chimaev vs. Gilbert Burns fight below:
Khamzat Chimaev's coach was screaming at him to stop brawling with Gilbert Burns
Following a tough second round that saw Khamzat Chimaev absorb a stream of left hooks to the face, his coach Andreas Michael screamed at him in Swedish while he was on the stool. In a message posted to Instagram, Michael explained what he was saying. He wrote:
"'Stop brawling stop having a street fight use your straight punchs and keep it Easy, this is an Easy fight if you dont brawl all you have to do is keep him on your jab and have patience. Dont make it harder than it has to be.' Nothing else was needed just fast jab and sometimes a straight right keeping your distance reach, to not get hit with the hooks. Thats what i demanded from him."
Michael was unhappy that Chimaev let the fight devolve into a brawl. He wrote:
"These guys gave a show to the public. But as a coach i dont Care about the public i Care about the easiest way to the WIN with the minimum damage. Thats My number One job to protect the fighter."
Khamzat Chimaev still came away with the win and a lot of respect from Dana White, who said Chimaev is definitely 'the real deal'.