Khamzat Chimaev wanted to forfeit his £1.72m purse to fight Nate Diaz

Khamzat Chimaev claims he was willing to forfeit his £1.7m purse to fight Nate Diaz at UFC 279 after weighing SEVEN POUNDS over the limit for their proposed bout… before the Swedish star was instead forced to face Kevin Holland in a backup contest

  • Khamzat Chimaev was willing to forfeit his entire fight purse to face Nate Diaz 
  • Chimaev was seven and a half pounds over the weight limit at Friday’s weigh-in
  • Instead he made light work of Kevin Holland ensuring a first-round submission 

Khamzat Chimaev claims Nate Diaz turned down his offer to forfeit his purse in order to ensure that the fight went ahead after he came in heavy on Friday’s weigh-in. 

The Swedish fighter, insists he was willing to forfeit his £1.72million ($2m) purse to fight the veteran Diaz, who went on to win his final fight to ensure he ended his career on a high note, as the pair were allowed to share the main-event on the card. 

Chamaev was seven-and-a-half pounds too heavy to make the necessary weight to fight Diaz, and instead faced Kevin Holland, who posed little issue for the three-time Swedish national wrestling champion. 

Khamzat Chimaev made swift work of Kevin Holland after a first-round submission

Russian-born Chimaev didn’t look fussed when weighing in over seven pounds over the limit

He told ESPN: ‘I could make that weight, the doctor stopped that. So yeah, what I could do now? 

‘I was waiting [to see what] UFC said to me. I said I want to fight so I’ll give all my money to that guy. 

‘This was almost two million… so I said give all my money to that guy, let him fight. If he is that gangster, he should fight for money. 

After Chamaev violated the weight restrictions Diaz went on to beat Tony Ferguson instead

‘But he didn’t want to fight me, you know. So, who’s the gangster now?

‘I was like if you want to switch people on me on one f****ng day after I’ve just cut 15 pounds to make me change my opponent, you’ve got to give me more money than you give all of the champions in this organisation. 

‘They were like, “Stupid we already gave you…” then I was like, “Well I want more than that then”.’ 

UFC President Dana White rescheduled the card to allow Chimaev to controversially fight

As a result of the final change of arrangements just before Saturday night’s fight, Diaz was compensated generously, as he hinted in his reply to questions at the amount, saying just: ‘I lost count.’

Chamaev was still allowed to fight at UFC 279 – a move which has stirred up some controversy – and faced Holland, who provided little resistance to the Swede. 

Holland had only been given 48-hours notice to prepare for the fight, which the ever-outspoken Conor McGregor believes will only encourage more fighters to turn up heavy to the octagon. 

Conor McGregor has blasted the UFC for allowing Chimaev to fight despite missing weight

McGregor tweeted: ‘My opinion they should have pulled Khamzat from the card entirely.

‘Reconfiguring bouts, and with a more favourable bout for the failed cutter, will only make many others in the game follow suit. 

‘The smirks on the scale where enough for me. Pull from the card and starve. McG UFC.’ 

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