clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Khamzat Chimaev’s coach: Conor McGregor joining forces would be ‘best thing he can do for his life’

UFC 264: Poirier v McGregor 3 Photo By Thomas King/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Khamzat Chimaev quickly became one of the hottest sensations in MMA after running through his first four opponents in the UFC, and he could very well earn a shot at the welterweight belt with a UFC 273 win over Gilbert Burns on April 9.

Undefeated in 10 professional bouts and dominant in every victory so far, Chimaev recently partnered with Darren Till in training in Sweden, and extended an invitation for former two-division champion Conor McGregor, who is currently recovering from a leg break suffered in his most recent defeat to Dustin Poirier.

“If you want to come back we will help you, we are waiting for you in our camp,” Chimaev tweeted recently at McGregor.

“The Notorious” hasn’t responded to the invitation, but Chimaev’s jiu-jitsu coach Alan Nascimento said on this week’s episode of MMA Fighting’s Portuguese-language podcast Trocação Franca that the doors of Allstars Training Center are open for the Irish star, who fights out of Straight Blast Gym in Ireland.

“if Conor did that, that would be the best thing he can do for his life today,” Nascimento said. “Till has done it, man. He was humble enough to understand that, ‘Man, I need to evolve.’ You can’t teach a striker like Darren Till to throw a jab, but it’s the overall evolution in an environment where many guys will be motivating and inspiring you, making you boost your dedication.

“It’s like you’re starting from zero again, restarting. [Till] said, ‘I need this.’ That’s not him just wanting to evolve, that’s him being humble and recognizing that, in order to continue doing what he loves, it’s time to get some fresh air. So, if Conor has that humility and decides to come train with us, I believe he has a lot to add and also learn.”

Till is at a crossroads in his career after losing four of his past five in the UFC, the past three at middleweight. McGregor, who once had the UFC featherweight and lightweight titles, has only won once in more than five years, a 40-second knockout over Donald Cerrone that sandwiched between defeats to Poirier and Khabib Nurmagomedov in the UFC, plus a very lucrative boxing defeat to Floyd Mayweather Jr.

“We have a lot to offer, and I’m sure Conor also has a lot to teach,” Nascimento said. “Not only in the technique aspect, the striking and etc, but also, like I said, he’s very experienced. No one can take that away from him. If someone’s willing to listen and understand everything he has to teach, I believe this person would reap great fruits from it.”

Nascimento said the gym has welcomed many fighters who could one day meet in the UFC, like light heavyweights Jan Blachowicz and Jiri Prochazka, training under the same roof of Alexander Gustafsson, Ilir Latifi, Jimi Manuwa, and Volkan Oezdemir.

“Great guys went there and the doors will always be open because they knew how to come, how to stay and how to leave,” he said. “If you come with humility, you’ll always be welcome. Now, if you come with pride, lack of humility, wanting to have VIP treatment, you better not come, because then you’re not a piece for our puzzle. You must be a piece that fits. The only thing we ask is to keep your ego outside and be humble. You’ll always be welcome. We’re waiting for what Conor decides. He hasn’t responded yet, but the invitation is out there. It’s up to him now.”

Meanwhile, Chimaev and Till continue to train together in Las Vegas, finishing Chimaev’s camp for his upcoming clash with “Durinho” in Florida. Till has yet to book a fight since losing via submission to Derek Brunson in Sept. 2021.

For Nascimento, having both fighters work together in conjunction has been a match made in heaven.

“They are helping each other tremendously and have created a friendship that is beautiful to watch,” Nascimento said. “It’s a brotherhood. Till needed that, to breathe new air and be close to someone that is that hungry to win. Not only the grappling and takedown part but also the mental part. [Till] is very happy in training, more excited. He’s an exceptional person, humble enough to ask and want to learn, which is hard to find in someone of this caliber. Till can also teach Khamzat a lot because he has a ton of experience in the UFC. They are helping each other and completing each other extraordinarily.”