Khamzat Chimaev Leaves Sweden for UAE Ahead of UFC 294

Khamzat Chimaev, the rising star of the UFC, has made a surprising move by leaving Sweden and emigrating to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Chimaev, who was born in Chechnya, moved to Sweden when he was 19 and trained MMA at the Allstar Training Center in Stockholm. He represented Sweden in each of his six UFC bouts, winning all of them in dominant fashion.

However, according to his manager Majdi Shammas, Chimaev has decided to change his international allegiance and will now represent the UAE. Shammas told Swedish outlet SVT Sports that Chimaev wanted to emigrate and has been training in his new home for the past several weeks. The reason behind Chimaev’s decision is not clear, but some speculate that it could be related to the controversial tax law in Sweden that affects high-income earners.

Khamzat Chimaev Leaves Sweden for UAE Ahead of UFC 294
Khamzat Chimaev Leaves Sweden for UAE Ahead of UFC 294

Chimaev’s upcoming fight against Costa

Chimaev is set to return to action at UFC 294 on October 14, where he will face Paulo Costa in a pivotal middleweight showdown. The fight will take place in Abu Dhabi, meaning that Chimaev will have a home crowd advantage as he represents the UAE. Chimaev has not fought since his submission win over Kevin Holland at UFC 279 in December 2022, due to health issues and scheduling conflicts. He was originally supposed to fight Leon Edwards in January 2023, but the bout was cancelled multiple times due to COVID-19 complications.

Chimaev is confident that he will make a successful comeback and prove himself as a title contender in the 185-pound division. He said in a video posted on his YouTube channel that he will smash Costa and then go after the champion Israel Adesanya or Sean Strickland, who recently dethroned Adesanya at UFC 293. Chimaev also praised Strickland for his hard work and dedication, saying that he deserved the belt.

Costa’s response to Chimaev’s challenge

Costa, on the other hand, is not impressed by Chimaev’s hype and believes that he will expose him as a fraud. Costa, who is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Adesanya at UFC 253 in September 2022, said in an interview with MMA Fighting that Chimaev is a “fake fighter” who has only fought “cans” and “bums”. He also accused Chimaev of using steroids and said that he will knock him out in the first round.

Costa also mocked Chimaev for changing his nationality and said that he is a “traitor” who betrayed Sweden. He said that he will make Chimaev regret his decision and teach him a lesson in respect. Costa added that he is not afraid of fighting in Abu Dhabi and that he will have the support of the Brazilian fans who will travel to watch him.

The stakes of the fight

The fight between Chimaev and Costa is one of the most anticipated bouts of the year, as both fighters are known for their aggressive and explosive styles. The winner of the fight will likely earn a title shot against Strickland, who is currently riding a nine-fight winning streak. The loser of the fight will face a setback in their career and will have to rebuild their momentum.

The fight will also have implications for the MMA landscape in the Middle East, as Chimaev will try to become the first UFC champion from the UAE. The UAE has been hosting UFC events since 2010 and has become a hub for MMA in the region. Chimaev’s success could inspire more fighters from the UAE and other Arab countries to pursue their dreams in the sport.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *