Sunday, August 14, 2022

Chimaev Reveals Issue Increasing Fame Causes At Allstars Gym

UFC welterweight contender Khamzat Chimaev‘s rise to stardom hasn’t been without its issues, even back at his Stockholm-based gym.

On MMA’s biggest stage, not many names have risen the ranks as fast as Chimaev. After a record-breaking period saw him record three wins in just 66 days, including a 17-second knockout of middleweight veteran Gerald Meerschaert, “Borz” exploded into the rankings last October by decimating Li Jingliang.

And having passed the next test, which came against top-five contender and one-time title challenger Gilbert Burns at UFC 273, Chimaev finds himself within touching distance of the 170-pound title and set for his first time in the headline spotlight versus Nate Diaz at UFC 279.

With that, Chimaev’s notoriety has continued to expand, to the point where he now boasts over four million followers on Instagram. But that fame hasn’t been without its drawbacks — not even at the Allstars Training Center in Stockholm, Sweden.

While the facility became well known thanks to the success of Alexander Gustafsson at light heavyweight, it’s perhaps safe to say that Chimaev’s fast surge up the UFC ladder has really put it on the map.

As it turns out, that’s a map that a whole lot of people have, and are following…

Chimaev: Crazy People Come To The Gym Now

During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Chimaev spoke about his rapid growth from under-the-radar prospect to globally-known fighter.

After admitting that it’s been difficult to adjust to, Chimaev named one of the main issues he’s coming across as a result of the added attention. In what is no doubt a hindrance on his training, the Chechen-born Swede revealed that a number of “crazy” people travel to the gym just to ask for photos with him.

One individual apparently even came looking for a scrap with “Borz,” which is certainly not advisable — something Li Jingliang, Gerald Meerschaert, Rhys McKee, and John Phillips can attest to.

“Yeah, that’s [fame] hard, sure. But in the gym now, a lot of people come and just destroy my training while I’m just doing my pads,” Chimaev said. “Somebody will jump up like, ‘Come make picture, brother, I come from Australia, I come from UK.’ … Every day, some crazy people come. One time, one crazy guy was like, ‘I wanna fight Khamzat Chimaev.’ I’m like, ‘Why the f*ck you wanna fight with me?’

“Different, crazy things are happening now because I’m one of the most famous guys in the UFC. Wherever I go, people are calling. Yeah, it’s crazy. It’s hard,” Chimaev added.

Should he continue his ascension inside the Octagon, it stands to reason that Chimaev’s fame will only increase. That’s especially true given his next fight, which will see him face MMA superstar Nate Diaz in what looks likely be the Stockton native’s final fight in the UFC.

With aspirations of a record-breaking UFC reign across multiple divisions, it seems that Chimaev is just getting started and has GOAT status in his crosshairs.

How do you think Khamzat Chimaev’s fight against Nate Diaz will play out?

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