Khamzat Chimaev walked away with more than just a win over Kamaru Usman earlier today (Sat., Oct. 21, 2023) at UFC 294 live on ESPN+ PPV from inside Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, as “Borz” believes he suffered a broken hand in the very first round of action (per ESPN).
Chimaev, who remains undefeated at 13-0, was originally expected to face former UFC middleweight title challenger Paulo Costa in the co-main event. Costa had a really bad elbow injury and was replaced by Usman on just two weeks. This was Usman’s middleweight debut, but a chance for him to lock down a shot at the 185-pound crown his next time out.
Unfortunately for Usman, Chimaev’s high-level output, grappling attacks, and three-round cardio were too much to handle. Chimaev would go on to capture a majority decision win and his seventh victory under the UFC banner. It was a great performance by Chimaev, but he didn’t leave the Octagon completely unscathed.
In fact, Chimaev told ESPN after the fight that he believes he broke his right hand in the first round of his fight with Usman. This would explain why Khamzat was able to completely disrupt Usman in the first round only to slow down over the course of the second and third.
“First round, I think I broke my hand and finger,” Chimaev said. “I couldn’t punch hard with right hand. My right hand is a big weapon. When you can’t use it, it’s hard to work.”
It’s unknown at this time the severity of the injury or how long a broken hand might keep Chimaev out. The undefeated Chechen fighter will have to get an x-ray to determine his next course of action.
“I will check my hand,” Chimaev said. “If it’s good, I’m gonna try to lift the weights and be ready for the next one.”
For complete UFC 294 results, coverage and highlights click HERE.