Khamzat Chimaev is unapologetic for his involvement in the backstage brawl before the press conference for UFC 279 on Thursday.
Chimaev was one of six fighters scheduled to appear at the pre-fight press conference for the upcoming pay-per-view event, but several altercations led to it being canceled. UFC president Dana White revealed that Chimaev and Kevin Holland were involved in the first one before the second one between Team Chimaev and Team Diaz broke out, culminating in a ‘complete s—t show’. Punches, kicks and water bottles were thrown, leaving White no choice but to shut everything down because he knew ‘where this whole press conference was headed’.
“Yeah [it was Khamzat Chimaev and Kevin Holland that started it],” said White. “There were multiple things going on at the same time. It wasn’t just one thing that erupted and it happened. There were multiple things going on at the same time.
“So there was security over there, there was no security over there,” continued White. “There was no security over there cause everybody was dealing with the other thing and once it all started erupting, it was just a complete s—t show.”
Chimaev responded to what happened shortly after and sent a shot at Holland and Diaz.
“I told them: Don’t joke with us,” said Chimaev on Instagram, translated by Mike Bohn of MMA Junkie. “Kevin got what he deserved. Diaz got what he deserved.”
Despite never sharing the Octagon, Chimaev and Holland have quite a history. The ’Trailblazer’ commented on ‘Borz’ and his experience with COVID-19 a year ago, downplaying its seriousness and telling the undefeated fighter to ‘get the f—k over it’ after he considered retirement because of its long-haul symptoms. Months after those comments, Chimaev accosted Holland at the fighter hotel before UFC Vegas 11 in late 2020.
Fast forward to now, and Chimaev has confronted Holland again for recent comments, the alleged catalyst for the backstage brawl.
UFC 279 is set for Sat., Sept. 10, live from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Chimaev vs. Diaz serves as the headliner.
About the author