The matchup is set to take place at UFC 267 on October 30th. This is a huge spot for “The Leech”. The last time we saw Li was when he fought Santiago Ponzinibbio back in January. Li scored a first round knockout in that fight.
That was a massive feather in the cap for Li who derailed the hype train of Ponzinibbio. Now, Li is going to be tasked with taking out another UFC hype train in Khamzat Chimaev.
Li has been with the UFC since 2014. During that time, he’s gone 9-4 and he’s been in there with some really solid welterweights. He’s 4-1 in his last five fights with the lone loss coming against top ten contender Neil Magny.
UFC Return for Chimaev
UFC 267 will mark the highly anticipated return of Khamzat Chimaev. Chimaev took the combat sports world by storm in 2020 and he looked to be on the fast track. The Chechen star made his UFC debut on Fight Island.
Chimaev won two fights in ten days and he did so in extremely dominant fashion. He made his debut at middleweight but fought his second fight at his natural weight class of 170 pounds.
After those two wins, the UFC booked him against middleweight veteran Gerald Meerschaert. It was supposed to be the first real test for Chimaev, but he made it look easy. After showing off his dominant wrestling in his first two fights, Chimaev showed his striking and power off.
Chimaev knocked Meerschaert out in just 17 seconds to pick up his third UFC win. From there, Chimaev was booked against top contender Leon Edwards for a headliner in December. Chimaev went from an unknown to potentially fighting in a title eliminator.
However, that fight fell through after both men came down with COVID-19. Chimaev had a very difficult time with COVID and contemplated retirement. However, he’s back to 100% and he has a big fight in front of him at UFC 267.