Just one day before UFC 279 in Las Vegas, Khamzat Chimaev, who is set to face Nate Diaz in the main event, was too heavy at weigh-in Friday.
Chimaev came in at 178½ pounds, which is 7½ pounds heavier than his 171-pound limit in the welterweight class.
Diaz weighed in perfectly at 171 pounds. Chimaev is putting the fight at UFC Apex in jeopardy.
Chimaev, a 28-year-old who is undefeated at 11-0-0 in his UFC career, is set to face Diaz, who is in his final fight on his current contract. At 37 years old, it’s unclear whether Diaz will be back.
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Chimaev is a heavy favorite to win this matchup. Fox Bet has him at -1000 (bet $1000 to win $100). So this is a big problem, and Chimaev needs to cut that weight in time for Saturday’s final weigh-in.
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Is it impossible? No. It’s been done before, and Chimaev shrugged his shoulders when his weight came in. He even posted a joke on his Twitter account.
Chimaev has had a tumultuous week leading into this fight. Paulo Costa, a middleweight fighter, got into a verbal altercation with Chimaev Wednesday. Then, during the UFC 279 news conference, Chimaev kicked Kevin Holland, who is scheduled to fight Daniel Rodriguez on the card Saturday. UFC canceled the news conference immediately after the fight was broken up.
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If this fight doesn’t go on, then the bout between Tony Ferguson and Li Jingliang, who also fight welterweight, will be the main event as it is scheduled as a co-main event at the moment. Both fighters weighed in at 170½.