Skip to main content

Unbeaten UFC middleweight contender Khamzat Chimaev has issued a (very brief) statement following the confirmation that he has been removed from this weekend’s scheduled bout with former champion Robert Whittaker. 

It was announced last week by UFC CEO Dana White that illness had precluded Chimaev from the card to take place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in what would have been his first bout of 2024. It is the sixth time in his UFC career that Chimaev has withdrawn from an announced fight. As of now, there are no details as to the status of Chimaev’s health, or when he might be eligible to compete once again.

However, in a message posted in English to his social media channels Chimaev said that any trials and tribulations he encounters in his career are little more than fate.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Khamzat Chimaev (@khamzat_chimaev)

“We always plan something but Allah has his own plans for us,” he wrote on Instagram.

Speaking earlier this week, White told Jim Rome that Chimaev had suddenly become “violently ill” and admitted that Chimaev’s recent career run — during which he has fought just five times since September 2020 — has been an unfortunate development for his career.

“I saw this kid on Fight Island, he wanted to fight the next weekend,” White said, as noted by MMA Fighting. “I let him fight the next weekend. He looked incredible. He’s been on this tear and lately it’s been hard to get him into the Octagon.

“Every time he gets close to fighting, he gets really sick,” White added. “I don’t know [the status]. I don’t know what to say. It’s not like he’s over here in this country and we’ve had doctors here look at him or anything like that. He’s sort of out of touch so it’s tough to deal with.”

Chimaev most recently competed last October where he scored a majority decision win against former welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.

Whittaker will instead fight the 15-1 Ikram Aliskerov this Saturday night in Riyadh — a four-time Combat Sambo world champion, whose only career MMA defeat came against Chimaev several years ago.