Georgian featherweight contender Giga Chikadze is making plenty of noise with his fists and his feet in the octagon, but feels that he needs to start making some enemies in order to hasten his path to the top of the division.
Chikadze takes on fellow contender Calvin Kattar on Saturday night in the main event of UFC Vegas 46, and decided to try something new to help get his name out there before the matchup.
“I think I’ve been too nice all my career, and maybe it’s time to talk some sh*t,” Chikadze told reporters during media day at the UFC Apex.
“Just wait for my trash talk. I’ve learned English very well now, and I’m ready to go.”
However, his plan to engage in some pre-fight trash talk didn’t involve his upcoming opponent. Instead, Chikadze took aim at the reigning 145-pound champion, Alexander Volkanovski.
Chikadze threw his hat in the ring as a potential short-notice replacement for the injured Max Holloway when the Hawaiian was forced out of his planned UFC 272 title bout with Volkanovski, but the Aussie rebuffed him over social media.
That didn’t sit well with Chikadze, who was less than impressed to discover that Volkanovski subsequently agreed to face “The Korean Zombie,” Chan Sung Jung instead, with the pair set to face off in April at UFC 273.
“That little chump, he’s taking the easy task,” said Chikadze.
“‘Korean Zombie’ has probably like from the last seven fights, he’s 4-3. I’m on a roll. I’m 7-0 since I got into UFC, so how can you avoid me?
“There is a reason why he’s avoiding me, and I understand that. You know, he’s fighting the guy who’s already dead. He’s a zombie, you know, and I’m here, the new guy. New blood. New dog, (a) ninja, and I deserve to be standing right there.”
Chikadze can extend his winning run to 10 fights – with eight straight wins under the UFC banner – with victory over Kattar on Saturday, but the man known as “The Boston Finisher” certainly won’t topple easily, as Chikadze himself acknowledged.
“Some people throw 500 punches and can’t finish the guy,” he stated.
“This guy can take 500 punches and keep moving forward, and usually, he finishes.
“That’s why this fight excites me. He’s never been broken. He’s never been knocked out or knocked down, so it’s a challenge to me this time.”