It’s now been officially confirmed that Khamzat Chimaev did suffer a hand injury during his decision victory over Kamaru Usman at UFC 294, but the good news is that he won’t require surgery.
There had been fears that Chimaev may have broken his hand, but his manager Majdi Shammas has revealed to mmafighting.com that the star in fact tore a ligament in his hand in the opening round of the fight.
As such he’ll now need to wear a brace for 3-4 weeks before he can begin rehabbing the injury, and as things stand he won’t need to have surgery, though the situation will be reassessed a few weeks after the brace has been removed.
That appears to leave the door open for Chimaev to use the win over Usman as a springboard to a potential title fight against Sean Strickland in early 2024.
There’s no guarantee he’ll get that fight, but with Israel Adesanya having declared that he’s going to sit out for an extended period rather than seek a swift rematch with Strickland it does leave a window of opportunity for him, though Dricus du Plessis is among other leading contenders who will also be vying for a shot at the title too.