Khamzat Chimaev issues warning ahead of UFC 297 title fight: ‘I didn’t know I was scaring them so much’

Khamzat Chimaev issues warning ahead of UFC 297 I didn't know I was scaring them so much

Unbeaten middleweight contender, Khamzat Chimaev remains steadfast in his claim to a title shot in his return to the Octagon – claiming he was unaware his recent targets, Sean Strickland and Dricus du Plessis were so scared of him ahead of their own battle at UFC 297 this month.

Chimaev, the current number nine ranked middleweight contender, improved to 13-0 as a professional back in October at UFC 294, turning in a close, majority decision win over former undisputed welterweight champion, Kamaru Usman in his return to active competition.

Landing in the top-10 off the back of his middleweight return victory, Chechen-born contender, Chimaev suffered a hand ligament injury in the opening round of the bout, and has since undergone a surgical procedure to address the setback, as well as battling a worrying, unknown illness.

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Eyeing a championship challenge in his immediate return, Chimaev’s claim has been immediately shot down by du Plessis, who questions the validity of his stake, while Strickland has questioned the meritocracy in which he’s earned a tilt recently.

Khamzat Chimaev mocks Strickland And du Plessis

And sure to have a keen eye on UFC 297 later this month ahead of Strickland’s title defense premiere against South African contender, du Plessis, Chimaev claims he wasn’t aware he was “scaring” the duo.

“They have a fight soon, but they both think about me, I didn’t know that I was scaring them so much,” Khamzat Chimaev posted on his official X account

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Preferring a title defense against arch-enemy, Israel Adesanya – who will be in attendance in ‘The Great White North’ should he defeat Strickland, du Plessis claimed a fight with gold on the line against Chimaev made less than sense

“As far as I know Khamzat’s (Chimaev) a welterweight,” Dricus du Plessis said. “What middleweight did he fight? He fought at middleweight, but he fought a welterweight [in Kamaru Usman]. Gerald Meerschaert? When was that? Was he even ranked? No, he wasn’t ranked. So, that makes absolutely no sense.”

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“The UFC promised him a title fight?” Dricus du Plessis questioned. “Where in the world does that happen? And he says he’s fighting (Sean) Strickland. No, you’re not. If there’s a champion, if you get a title shot, I’m the champion, You’re not going to get a title shot. And Israel? That makes sense.” 

Do you think Khamzat Chimaev deserves a title fight next?