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In this exclusive interview, Khamzat Chimaev’s heavyweight colleague Ilir Latifi discusses training with “Borz.”


Ilir Latifi, who plays on the same team as Khamzat Chimaev, has spoken out about what it’s like to train with “Borz.”

Recently, UFC heavyweight Ilir Latifi conferred with Sportskeeda MMA originals for the purpose of conducting an exclusive interview. During the course of the conversation, Latifi discussed a range of issues, one of which was his time spent training with Khamzat Chimaev.

Latifi recalled the day when ‘Borz’ initially came to his gym to practice in the early days of the latter’s professional career. Latifi made the following statement while implying that the UFC welterweight astonished everyone with his talent and dedication despite the fact that he had no previous experience in MMA:

“Khamzat was like, when he first came down to the gym a couple of years ago, me and Alex [Gustafsson] were both contenders for the light heavyweight class and we were like training for huge fights, you know what I’m saying? I see this scrawny guy walk into the gym, and we let him train with us, and then we were like, “Wow, this guy is good.”Although he was only a wrestler and had no prior training in mixed martial arts or anything else, we were able to recognize his innate talent and passion to the sport almost immediately. The rest, as they say, is history, and as for that guy, the world just hasn’t realized how good he really is yet.

Dana White reveals why Khamzat Chimaev has been absent from UFC in 2023

Since quite some time, Khamzat Chimaev has been out due to injury. It was in September 2022 when he was last seen engaging in combat with Kevin Holland. Since then, there have been rumors that ‘Borz’ will fight a number of different people; but, to this day, none of those fights have really taken place.

Regarding the fact that Chimaev was not present in the octagon. Dana White, the president of the UFC, admitted that he has been preoccupied with matters pertaining to his personal life. White made these comments in the course of an interview with combat sports journalist Aaron Bronsteter:

However, it is on him because he has a lot going on in his personal life right now. That is not because we are unable to get him a fight; obviously, you are familiar with how things work around here, and you’ve probably heard me mention this topic before; we are required to get guys three fights every year. Therefore, we are required to compensate the fighters if we are unable to secure three fights for them each year. The only reason why anything like that wouldn’t occur is because they have personal issues going on.”

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