BREAKING : Khamzat Chimaev vs Leon Edwards Reportedly Cancelled for the Second Time

Published 12/29/2020, 6:50 AM EST
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 24: Khamzat Chimaev of Czechia poses on the scale during the UFC Fight Night weigh-in inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 24, 2020 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Khamzat Chimaev will reportedly not fight against Leon Edwards. This is the second time the fight has fallen through after Edwards had to pull out of their main event fight in December. The UFC will now look to replace ‘Borz’ for the third scheduled card on their return to Fight Island.

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While no official announcement has been provided by the UFC, the rumors first floated after MMA Island reported that changes were being made to the card, including to the main event. 

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Khamzat Chimaev is out of his fight with Leon Edwards

“Khamzat Chimaev is rumored to be out of his Jan. 20 fight against Leon Edwards. Chimaev has been replaced as ‘TBD’ on the UFC production prompt. The UFC has also removed the booking from their website,” MMA Island’s Twitter account reported. They would further confirm that the rumors to be true as FrontKick broke the news officially.

This was not an easy break for Leon Edwards, who was unable to compete during 2020 due to the COVID-19 lockdowns. ‘Rocky’ was seen as the #1 contender to welterweight champion Kamaru Usman’s title. However, with him being stuck in the UK, Gilbert Burns was pushed up to the #1 contender’s spot, and Jorge Masvidal got a title shot as well.

Since then, Edwards had to be content with accepting the next fight that was offered to him. The opponent was Khamzat Chimaev, the Swedish star who had a surreal rise to fame in the UFC after fighting thrice in the second half of the year. Edward’s who is ranked #3 would face Chimaev, who had just broken into the UFC’s top 15. Initially, Edwards showed some resistance to the match up but was removed from the UFC rankings altogether.

Who should replace Khamzat?

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Welterweight is one of the top divisions in the UFC. With the likes of Gilbert Burns, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, all in the mix, it could very well be one of them who steps in to face Edwards.

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – JULY 20: Leon Edwards of Jamaica stands in his corner prior to facing Rafael Dos Anjos in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at AT&T Center on July 20, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

The fans would love to see Jorge Masvidal face Leon Edwards. A fight against Masvidal would boost Edward’s star power, but ‘Gamebred’ could already have his hands full with Colby Covington. Additionally, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see names like Neil Magny or Stephen Thompson step in.

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Read: Khabib Nurmagomedov Reveals Serious Injuries Leading Into UFC 254

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Keith Dsouza

193 articles

Keith D'Souza is part of the Essentially Sports MMA writing team. Having followed the sport since 2013, some of his favorite fighters include Max Holloway, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor, and Johny Hendricks. Keith also runs PureMMAIndia, a brand that promotes MMA over social media which aims at growing the sport in India.

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