LAS VEGAS — The scheduled UFC 279 main event is in jeopardy after contestant Khamzat Chimaev missed weight by 7.5 pounds at the UFC Apex on Friday morning.
Chimaev and Nate Diaz have been signed to a welterweight fight headlining UFC 279 on Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena. The non-title welterweight limit is 171 pounds and Chimaev weighed 178.5 pounds. Diaz weighed 171 pounds.
As of Friday afternoon, the status of the biggest fight on the pay-per-view chart was in grave jeopardy.
To complicate matters, this was to be fan-favorite Diaz’s final fight for UFC contract and he would be a free agent after this weekend. It’s unclear what would happen contractually if Diaz, 37, didn’t fight on Saturday.
Chimaev, 28, is one of the UFC’s biggest rising stars and was a -1000 favorite according to Caesars Sportsbook. The UFC booked this fight essentially to get Chimaev a big star fight in Diaz, which he was expected to win.
Chimaev had a bizarre week. He got into a verbal altercation with middleweight Paulo Costa at the UFC Performance Institute on Wednesday, and on Thursday before the UFC 279 press conference, Chimaev got into a skirmish with Kevin Holland, who is on the UFC 279 card, and Daniel Rodriguez should fight . Chimaev entered Holland during the fight. The press conference was eventually canceled.
As Chimaev weighed in on Friday morning, he shrugged and showed no regrets over the massive miss. He later posted a meme on Twitter joking about the lack of weight.
The co-main event fighters both tip the scales for UFC 279. Tony Ferguson and Li Jingliang each weighed 170.5. Holland was 179.5 pounds and Rodriguez was 179 for their 180-pound catchweight fight.
https://www.espn.com/mma/story/_/id/34556992/khamzat-chimaev-misses-weight-more-seven-pounds-bout-vs-nate-diaz-doubt Khamzat Chimaev misses weight by 7.5 pounds; UFC 279 bout vs. Nate Diaz in jeopardy