Stephen Thompson Thinks Khamzat Chimaev’s UFC Ranking Is ‘Ridiculous’
Stephen Thompson doesn’t understand Khamzat Chimaev’s spot on the official UFC welterweight rankings.
Chimaev has been on the fast track to stardom under the UFC banner. He fought twice within the span of 10 days back in July. He scored a submission win over John Phillips and a TKO finish over Rhys McKee. In his biggest win to date, Chimaev knocked out Gerald Meerschaert in 17 seconds back in September.
Still, Thompson thinks Chimaev’s push has reached levels that aren’t deserved. Here’s what “Wonderboy” told MMAJunkie.com.
“I think he was ranked No. 15, which doesn’t make sense to me. I know he’s had one fight in the welterweight division, and his opponent (Rhys McKee) is 0-2 right now and normally a lightweight, a 155er, so it just doesn’t make sense how this guy can jump past everybody who’s worked their behinds off to get to where they’re at, and now he’s ranked No. 15 fighting the No. 3 guy, I believe. It’s just ridiculous to me.
“I had to fight through murderer’s row to get to where I’m at and so did Leon Edwards. He was on a (eight-fight) winning streak to get to where he’s at. I had to fight a slew of guys, I mean tough opponents. Robert Whittaker, Jake Ellenberger, Rory McDonald, Johny Hendricks to get to where I’m at, and then this guy just jumps past everybody. I think it’s a slap in the face to everybody who’s worked their butts off.”
Chimaev was expected to face Leon Edwards in the main event of the final UFC card of 2020 on December 19. Edwards tested positive for COVID-19, so that plan went awry. The new main event for the card will be Thompson vs. Geoff Neal.