Geoff Neal asserted that Khamzat Chimaev hasn’t earned the importance that he’s being accorded by the UFC. Neal added, however, that he doesn’t hate Chimaev for capitalizing on the hype and opportunities that he’s getting from the UFC.
Geoff Neal feels Khamzat Chimaev hasn’t earned his spot in the upper echelons of the UFC
Speaking to MMA Fighting, UFC welterweight star Geoff Neal weighed in on Khamzat Chimaev receiving the opportunity to fight No. 3 ranked welterweight Leon Edwards.
Edwards and Chimaev were set to headline the UFC Vegas 17 fight card on December 19th. However, after both fighters tested positive for COVID-19 the fight was ultimately postponed for early next year.
The UFC Vegas 17 fight card will now be headlined by a five-round welterweight bout between Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson and Geoff Neal. Neal chimed in with his thoughts on Chimaev, stating:
“Honestly, it’s frustrating in a way but I signed up for this sh*t…It’s the UFC, it’s a business. [Chimaev] did what he had to do to get where he’s at so I can’t really hate on the man for it. Does he deserve it? Yeah, in a way. If we’re talking about fighting, no. But if we’re talking about business, yeah, he deserved it.”
Geoff Neal pointed out that Khamzat Chimaev has only fought one welterweight in the UFC. With regard to whether he feels Chimaev deserves to fight the No. 3 ranked UFC welterweight after just one win in the division, Geoff Neal reiterated:
“Hell no, he don’t deserve that. But if we’re talking about business and how he got the hype behind him, yeah, he deserves that.”
Geoff Neal doesn’t plan on changing his personality for fame and selling more PPVs
Geoff Neal explained that children join martial arts not to talk trash but to learn self-defense, respect, and integrity. Neal added that he doesn’t like it when fighters engage in excessive trash talk and go around ‘making a fool of themselves’.
Neal highlighted that the excessive trash talk and over-the-top public personas that certain fighters employ in their careers might help sell more PPVs. However, he isn’t interested in doing the same.
Furthermore, Geoff Neal cited the example of former interim UFC welterweight champion Colby Covington and opined that he isn’t sure whether Covington’s brash public persona is real or just an act. The talented welterweight continued that when it comes to him (Neal), what you see is what you get.
Moreover, Geoff Neal emphasized that he takes pride in his dignity. Neal added that he isn’t going to be someone or something he’s not simply to earn money.
Geoff Neal also suggested that one should learn to coexist with both worlds and learn to accept things that shouldn’t be happening.Published 18 Dec 2020, 05:57 IST