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“That’s Hard to Explain to People” – Khamzat Chimaev Strongly Advised to Live a Better Life

Published 02/03/2023, 4:30 PM EST

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After walking through his opponents since his debut in 2020, Khamzat Chimaev has proven time and again that he is more than a handful for any fighter. His three consecutive fights in a span of three months in 2020 proved that he was a force to reckon with in the promotion. But although his performances have been world-class, the question of which division the 28-year-old fits into has been left unanswered even now. Although he seems to have put himself among the best in the welterweight division, his weight fiasco at UFC 279 cast doubt on his ability to make the drastic cut.

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UFC legend Chael Sonnen, who himself has fought in multiple weight classes in his career, spoke to former fighter ‘King Mo’ on this topic recently. The duo speculated as to which weight class Chimaev would fit in; while Sonnen ended up sharing a piece of advice for the third-ranked welterweight.


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Chael Sonnen and King Mo discuss Khamzat Chimaev’s weight cutting

Talking about the difficulties of weight cutting, Sonnen questioned the idea of extreme cuts that made life, in general, difficult. “I mean, life is better when you’re not cutting that weight. I mean interacting with people, trying to have a relationship, getting up in the morning, going through a day. Life is better.” Pointed out the 53-year-old. 

Speaking from his own experiences as a fighter, the UFC Hall of Famer also questioned the absurdity of Chimaev, putting himself through those difficulties to make 175 pounds.


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“That has to be factored in. Of course, he goes 185. Why have a miserable life just to win some fights? Why not do a couple more pull-ups and go … and be happier? That’s hard to explain to people but you know what I mean by that.” stated Chael Sonnen.

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‘King Mo’ agreed with ‘The American Gangster’. He believed that the Chechnya-born fighter was risking losing a fight with a big weight cut.

 “…Chimaev understands how he wants to fight. You must cut the weight go ahead. But I really think that he’s doing himself a disservice and if he’s gonna lose to anybody because of this gas or gas issues or weight-cutting issues, he’ll be up with 170.” stated the former Strikeforce champ.

He then continued to point out the benefits of fighting at middleweight. “At 185, you might have enough technique, enough strength to beat those guys you know, and be fresh enough to go a hard three to five rounds if needed.

Chimaev’s previous weight-cut issues at the UFC


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All the points that were brought up by Sonnen and ‘King Mo’ were legitimate ones, especially with regard to Chimaev. The entire fiasco that occurred during the weigh-ins shadowed the 28-year-old’s last fight at UFC 279. Chimaev came in much heavier than the stipulated weight and the card had to be eventually shuffled up by the UFC. In response to that, Chimaev’s coach and Dana White had laid the blame on a botched up weight cut.

Even recent posts on Instagram show a bigger version of the Swede. Ultimately, it raises the question of whether he could make it to 175 again. And considering what happened at UFC 279, Chimaev and his camp would be wise to stick to 185 pounds; as stated by Sonnen himself.


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Written by:

Pragjyoti Singh


One take at a time

Pragjyoti is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. He is extremely passionate about MMA and has a good understanding of the sport and its technicalities. Having trained in the sport along with a passion for journalism, it has helped him develop a keen interest in the UFC and anything related to the promotion.
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Edited by:

Vineet Nandwana