Sunday MMA Quick Hits: Chimaev Wants Covington, Dana White Shows Charitable Side

Khamzat Chimaev, UFC 279
Khamzat Chimaev, UFC 279 ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

Dana White donates $10,000 to a Muay Thai fighter who suffered a tragic accident, while Khamzat Chimaev is thinking welterweight again, and targeting Colby Covington. That and more as your Sunday MMA Quick Hits are here again!

Chimaev Wants Colby Covington Next

Well, it looked like for a minute, Khamzat Chimaev was headed to middleweight. He’s fought there before, after all, and blew weight by a country mile at UFC 279, resulting in a 180lb catchweight with Kevin Holland being hastily put together, since Nate Diaz made the welterweight limit for the event.

Apparently, however, Chimaev wants to stick around 170 — and wants Colby Covington next.

Sure, it’s a fun fight and one that has been talked about for ages. But can Chimaev make the weight this time?

Bo Nickal & Raul Rosas Jr. Announced for UFC 4

Earlier this season, Dana White announced that a Contender Series contract winner would be added to EA Sports UFC 4. On the final episode of season six, it had come down to Joe Pyfer, Raul Rosas Jr., and Bo Nickal.

After another standout performance by Nickal, White announced that both he and 17-year old Rosas Jr. would be added to the game.

Of course, people are not thrilled that fighters like Jamahal Hill and upcoming title challenger Alex Pereira are not in the game, while a pair of athletes lacking a single UFC fight will be. But hey, welcome to the fight game.

White’s announcement from this past Tuesday can be found below.

Dana White Pledges 10K to Muay Thai Fighter Who Lost Legs

In December 2021, Muay Thai fighter John Esposito lost both of his legs after being struck by a car while working his day job doing road work.

A Public Works employee in Somerset County, Esposito was filling potholes when a car sped into his worksite and struck him from behind, pinning him. His legs were amputated in the accident, and Esposito flatlined while being transported to hospital via medivac, only to be resuscitated.

Less than a year later, Esposito is trying to stay positive, and can walk short distances with the use of two canes. There’s currently a GoFundMe set up to help make his home accessible – and per TMZ, UFC President Dana White has donated $10,000 to the cause.

Dana White gets to play the good guy for a change.

Juan Archuleta on How He Wound Up on Kingdom

Bellator’s Juan Archuleta made numerous appearances on Kingdom, an MMA-themed show that ran from 2014 to 2019. But just how did he wind up being a part of the series? The Bellator 286 fighter explained to Cageside Press that Joe Stevenson was brought on as an MMA consultant for the series — and Archuleta is one of Stevenson’s protegees.

Series creator Byron Balasco happened to attend Archuleta’s first fight as well, which was Balasco’s first time attending a live MMA event. That also helped. “He loved the fight and loved everything about it, and made me a part of the show.”

Roberto Soldic’s ONE Championship Debut Announced

Former KSW champion Roberto Soldic will make his ONE Championship debut this December.

During Friday’s ONE on Prime Video 2 broadcast, promotion officials confirmed that Soldic (20-3), who captured both welterweight and middleweight gold in Poland’s KSW, will fight Murad Ramazanov on December 2 in Manila, Philippines.

Solidc has won seven straight fights, and may best be remembered for back-to-back outings with current UFC star Dricus Du Plessis.

Antonio Inoki Passes Away at Age 79

Japanese pro wrestling legend and MMA promoter/pioneer Antonio Inoki has died at age 79.

Inoki, who hosted MMA fights under Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye and Inoki Genome Federation, himself appeared in a precursor to modern mixed martial arts when he faced Muhammad Ali in a mixed rules contest in June 1976. The bout, subject to much scrutiny as to whether it was a work (staged), underwent numerous rule changes just days out, and resulted in a draw. Ali was transported to hospital after taking damage to his legs due to Inoki’s kicks.

Inoki’s passing was reportedly due to systemic transthyretin amyloidosis.

Flying Kick KO Dazzles at Regional Show

No explanation is really needed here. Just check this out.

Cris Cyborg Victorious in Pro Boxing Debut

Following in the footsteps of Conor McGregor, Anderson Silva, and others, Cris Cyborg is the latest MMA fighter to try their hand at pro boxing.

Competing at a Fight Music Show event in her native Brazil, Cyborg was victorious against Simone Silva. The fight went the distance, with Cyborg winning a unanimous decision.

Bellator title defense next? Cat Zingano anyone?

Ben Rothwell Makes His Presence Felt at BKFC 30

Ben Rothwell made his BKFC debut on Saturday at BKFC 30, and immediately made his presence felt. Rothwell dropped Bobo O’Bannon is just 19 seconds. Consider yourselves on notice, BKFC heavyweights.