‘I don’t blame’ Nate Diaz ‘for not wanting to fight Khamzat Chimaev’

Nate Diaz has no interest in fighting Khamzat Chimaev, which has UFC president Dana White feeling some kind of way.

White said in early November that the UFC would approach Diaz about booking the matchup, which apparently happened, and Diaz made it clear this week that he felt disrespected he was even considered as an opponent for Chimaev, whom he deemed “a rookie.”

White’s reaction to that?

“Listen, man. Khamzat is a straight murderer, he’s a killer, he’s an absolute savage, and I don’t blame anybody for not wanting to fight Khamzat Chimaev,” White told TMZ.

When asked if he thought Diaz didn’t want to fight Chimaev for the reasons he stated or because he really views Chimaev as a rookie, White threw it back.

“What do you think?” White said.

Diaz (20-13 MMA, 15-11 UFC), one of the UFC’s biggest stars, has only one fight remaining on his contract, and he doesn’t want to settle for anybody. Coming off a unanimous decision loss to top contender Leon Edwards at UFC 263, Diaz wants to fight somebody ranked in the top 10 of the welterweight division.

White seemed to take exception with Diaz’s classification of Chimaev as “a rookie.”

“Everybody in this company is here because they belong here. There are no real rookies per se here,” White said. “There are guys with more experience and some guys with less experience. Khamzat Chimaev is one of those guys that’s willing to fight anybody in multiple weight classes, on short notice. He’s doing wrestling matches. If it’s a fight, he’s in, and he wants to fight you. And that’s the reality. People can spin Khamzat however they want, and I don’t blame them.”


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White’s sentiment echoes what he said earlier this week, that UFC fighters are “100 percent” afraid of Chimaev.

Chimaev (10-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) first burst onto the scene in July 2020 when he won two fights by finish in 10 days, which set a modern UFC record for time in between victories. Two months later, Chimaev scored a one-punch knockout of Gerald Meerschaert in 17 seconds, which elevated his stock and earned him a booking against Edwards.

The fight with Edwards never materialized after both men tested positive for COVID-19, with Chimaev having a long-hauler experience in which he thought he could die. Chimaev returned to the octagon with a bang on Oct. 30 at UFC 267 where he put Li Jingliang to sleep with a rear-naked choke in the first round.


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