Chikadze has been a leading name in the UFC’s recent Georgian invasion, with the likes of Merab Dvalishvili, Roman Dolidze and Ilia Topuria also making waves in the promotion in recent months.
Since making his UFC debut in 2019, “Ninja” has recorded victories over Irwin Rivera, Omar Morales and Cub Swanson on his way to a perfect 6-0 record. Chikadze’s most recent win against “Killer” at UFC Vegas 25 pushed him into the featherweight top 10.
But despite breaking into the group of 145-pound contenders, Chikadze hasn’t shut the door on opponents in other weight classes, even in regards to one top welterweight name.
Speaking during an interview with MMA Junkie, the 32-year-old revealed that he’d be open to a fight with Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson and can make 170 pounds if the UFC wants him to.
“I would love to do, even I can do 170 for this fight in UFC too, absolutely no problem. If he ever needs an opponent and you know, I walk around big, everyone knows that I cut a lot of weight, I’ll show up and fight 170 for this fight.” (H/T Sportskeeda)
Chikadze added that as well as a meeting inside the Octagon, the Georgian is keen to ask Thompson about his 57-0 kickboxing record.
“There are levels to kickboxing, you know. Stephen Thompson’s record is like 58 and 0 or 57 and 0 in kickboxing, I was watching the other day in Wikipedia. What type of kickboxing is that? I wanna ask him, you know, what do you mean kickboxing? This is different, this is different. When you live Netherlands, when you compete in Thailand, and there are levels I don’t even know.”
Despite “Wonderboy” being widely regarded as one of the greatest strikers in UFC history, Chikadze believes that he’s currently the best on the feet across every division.
“I just wanna fight. I feel I am the best fighter right now in the UFC in the featherweight division. As I said, I am the best striker at featherweight and all the different divisions as well. So, I want to fight and to entertain people.”
But while we try and image a mouth-watering striking battle between “Ninja” and Thompson, Chikadze’s focus will be on rising further up the 145-pound ladder. Despite being willing to replace Max Holloway for the July 17 main event against Yair Rodriguez, it appears the Mexican isn’t as keen.
With the Thiago Moises vs. Islam Makhachev bout set to headline the card instead, Chikadze will be adjusting his corsshairs to a different name for his next walk to the Octagon.
Do you think Giga Chikadze could compete with “Wonderboy” at welterweight?