Saturday’s Main Event UFC 279 is in danger after Khamzat Chimaev failed to gain weight ahead of his scheduled clash with Nate Diaz.
The undefeated welterweight stepped on the scales for the official weigh-ins on Friday and weighed in at 178.5 pounds, 8.5 pounds heavier than the contracted weight of 170 pounds. The announcement came just moments after Diaz, 37, weighed in at 171 pounds, the upper limit for both fighters given the extra pound the UFC allows for non-title bouts.
Despite the uncertainty surrounding his pre-fight status, the 28-year-old Chimaev didn’t seem too concerned about tipping the scales, as evidenced by the shrug he gave reporters before smiling and nodding. say, “That’s not bad.”
Scheduled to compete in his first fight in five rounds, Chimaev (11-0, 5-0 UFC) now faces the possibility of missing out on the chance to fight Diaz (21-13, 15-11 UFC) in what would also be be the very first rising star UFC headliner. Barring a change in Chimaev’s status, the UFC is reportedly already preparing a backup plan and “will be working to finalize it, although that will involve multiple parties agreeing to a change in circumstances,” according to a report by MMA enthusiast.
UFC 279 is set to take place Sept. 10 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, with the main card airing live on ESPN+ pay-per-view starting at 10 p.m. ET.
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