Robert Whittaker knocks back potential fight with UFC star Khamzat Chimaev: ‘That doesn’t move me’

Robert Whittaker knocks back UFC fight with Khamzat Chimaev next that doesn't move me

Targeting a return to the Octagon later this year following his impressive decision win over former title challenger, Paulo Costa at UFC 298 last month, former middleweight champion, Robert Whittaker has stressed his desire to fight Sean Strickland – rather than the unbeaten, Khamzat Chimaev next.

Whittaker, who moved to number three in the official middleweight pile off the back of his decision win over Belo Horizonte native, Costa in their UFC 298 main card clash, returned to the winner’s enclosure following a knockout loss to newly-crowned divisional gold holder, Dricus du Plessis back in July of last year. 

And staking his claim for a title-eliminator in his comeback, Whittaker has welcomed the chance to fight the aforenoted, Strickland – potentially as soon as August in a return to Perth, Australia. 

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“I’m angling towards the gold,” Robert Whittaker said during an appearance on the MMArcade Podcast. “I wanna reclaim my belt, you know. And I would love to run it back with Dricus (du Plessis) – especially ‘cause he’s got the gold as well, so it’s two-in-one, right?”

“But I do understand that (Sean) Strickland is in – is in line, like in the sights a little bit,” Robert Whittaker explained. “Everyone’s talking about him a lot, he’s at the top. And that kinda gives me the path to the gol that I’m longing for. So, I’m not really fussed on the opponent at the moment.”

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Robert Whittaker unsure on Khamzat Chimaev fight next

Weighing up the possibility of landing a fight with the unbeaten middleweight contender, Chimaev – Whittaker claimed that fighting down the rankings does very little – if nothing for him in his return this summer.

“[The Khamzat Chimaev fight] is tricky because that doesn’t move me,” Robert Whittaker said. “It does in clout, but it doesn’t move me higher up in the rankings. Beating (Sean) Strickland puts me at number one again, and that’s as close as you can get really.”

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