Khamzat Chimaev to take on Gilbert Burns at UFC 273 in April - Dana White

Chimaev has blitzed through four bouts in UFC thus far, but Burns will mark his biggest test

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Khamzat Chimaev is set to face his greatest UFC challenge to date, with promotion president Dana White confirming the fast-rising prospect will take on Gilbert Burns at UFC 273 in April.

The bout, originally reported last month by Brazilian news outlet Combate, has been slated for the already stacked April 9 card in Jacksonville, Florida. That event is headlined by featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski’s title defence against “The Korean Zombie” Jung Chan-sung, with the undisputed bantamweight title clash between Aljamain Sterling and Petr Yan also scheduled.

On Tuesday, when previewing this weekend’s UFC 272 in Las Vegas, White told Canadian outlet TSN that Chimaev-Burns was in the pipeline, before confirming to YouTube channel The Underground that “it’s happening” at UFC 273.

Undeniably, Burns will represent the most difficult test in Chimaev’s breakout UFC career thus far. The Brazilian, whose professional MMA record reads 20-4, is currently ranked the No 2 contender at welterweight. He last fought in July, when he rebounded from his defeat against champion and former teammate Kamaru Usman with a unanimous decision win against Stephen Thompson.

Chimaev, meanwhile, has taken the world’s lead MMA organisation by storm since debuting in Abu Dhabi in July 2020. In four bouts in the promotion, the Chechen-born athlete has cruised to four victories, in the process taking a solitary significant strike.

Most recently, Chimaev defeated China’s Li Jingliang by first-round submission at UFC 267 in Abu Dhabi in October to extend his unbeaten record in pro MMA to 10-0. Three of Chimaev’s four UFC appearances have taken place in the UAE capital.

Updated: March 01, 2022, 6:51 AM