Khabib Nurmagomedov has weighed in on Khamzat Chimaev’s upcoming fight against Li Jingliang. Nurmagomedov has suggested that Chimaev will likely secure a stoppage victory over Jingliang in their UFC 267 matchup.
MMA legend Khabib Nurmagomedov participated in a live Q&A session in Harrogate, UK. The session, posted on the Islam Channel on YouTube, features him speaking on a wide variety of topics. In response to being asked who’ll win the Chimaev-Jingliang matchup, Nurmagomedov stated:
“I think he (Khamzat Chimaev) is gonna win. I don’t think this guy (Li Jingliang) can stop his wrestling, pressure, ground game. Even in stand-up, I know this Korean guy – I don’t know his name – He’s very good. He’s good on his hands. But I think he (Chimaev) can take him down and finish him. I really believe. I don’t think he can stop him.”
Khabib Nurmagomedov and Khamzat Chimaev were born in the Caucasus region of Russia. Nurmagomedov hails from Dagestan, whereas Chimaev is from Chechnya.
While Nurmagomedov and Chimaev initially shared a cordial relationship, it gradually appeared as though the two were at loggerheads. This came after Chimaev claimed he'd tear 'The Eagle' apart if they were to ever face off in a fight.
Regardless, their rivalry was eventually settled after Khamzat Chimaev clarified that it was simply a result of a few misunderstandings. 'Borz' even claimed that he used to look up to Nurmagomedov and said that he regards the Dagestani MMA stalwart as a brother.
You can check out Khabib Nurmagomedov's statements regarding Khamzat Chimaev in the video below:
Will Khabib Nurmagomedov’s prediction regarding Khamzat Chimaev’s return ring true?
Khamzat Chimaev is regarded by many as 2020’s UFC breakout star. He made his UFC debut in July 2020 and amassed a 3-0 record inside the octagon, taking his overall MMA record to 9-0.
Chimaev was subsequently booked to face high-ranking UFC welterweight Leon Edwards in a potential title eliminator matchup. However, the Chechnya-born Swedish fighter contracted COVID-19, and his fight against Edwards was canceled on three separate occasions.
Khamzat Chimaev is said to have recovered from his COVID-related health issues earlier this year. Chimaev is now scheduled to face Chinese KO artist Li Jingliang in a welterweight bout at UFC 267 on October 30th, 2021.
The consensus in the MMA community is that Chimaev’s performance at UFC 267 will be a crucial indicator in determining whether or not the 27-year-old is back to his old healthy self.