UFC: Michael Chiesa says fighting Khamzat Chimaev is not smart business

Daniel Cunningham
Jan 25, 2020; Raleigh, NC, USA; Michael Chiesa (blue gloves) defeats Rafael Dos Anjos (red gloves) during UFC Fight Night at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

One of the top welterweights in the UFC is currently making his way back from injury. Michael Chiesa (17-4) hasn’t fought since January when he defeated Rafael Dos Anjos by unanimous decision. The third straight UFC victory for Chiesa.

Chiesa is currently ranked eighth in the UFC‘s welterweight division. He’s currently working his way back from injury with aspirations to fight in either December or January. Today at the UFC Fight Island 5 media scrum, Chiesa fielded questions from reporters.

Of course, one of the questions that came through was around the UFC‘s newest sensation, Khamzat Chimaev (9-0). Chimaev is currently scheduled to headline a fight night in either November or December, but the UFC still doesn’t have an opponent for him yet.

Chiesa was asked about the standstills that are going on in his division. He said that he couldn’t blame guys for not wanting to fight Chimaev. When asked if he would potentially take the fight if the UFC offered, Chiesa implied that the fight didn’t make a ton of sense.

The UFC’s Tough Situation

“You have to think about it like this. If he beats a guy, hypothetically, let’s say he beats Wonderboy. Now it’s lucrative. Hell yeah, now he’s proven he’s the real thing. However, if I lay it on the line and he beats me, he takes my spot. I beat him and they’d say he’s a flash in the pan,” Chiesa told reporters.

I have to say that the UFC veteran does have a point. Despite all the hype, Chimaev still doesn’t have a number next to his names. He’s still on the outside looking in when it comes to the UFC‘s rankings. That’s why no ranked fighter wants the fight.

As Chiesa said, if Chimaev defeats any top ten guy, he takes their spot. However, if the top contender wins, nothing changes for them besides getting a paycheck. That is where the UFC‘s problem is when it comes to Chimaev.

They want to rush Chimaev up the mountain, but top ranked fighters realize the danger in fighting him. They also realize they have way more to lose, they gain nothing from it. I think the UFC is going to have their hands full getting Chimaev a fight.