Giga Chikadze is targeting the big names now.
Chikadze earned the biggest win of his career after a liver kick earned him a first-round TKO win over featherweight veteran Cub Swanson in the UFC Vegas 25 co-headliner last night.
It put the Georgian on a six-fight winning streak in the UFC and he feels he is now ready for the elite 145-pounders. That was evident when he called for fights with former champion Max Holloway and Calvin Kattar.
“I was in Georgia when Max fought Calvin,” Chikadze said at the post-fight press conference (via MMA Junkie). “I was doing commentary for the fight, and I enjoyed this fight, and every time he was doing something nice I was like, ‘I want to fight him. I want to fight him.’
“I feel like after this type of performance, I might get it – if not, then I might get (Kattar).”
In reality, it’s highly unlikely Chikadze gets either of them as he is still unranked while Swanson wasn’t a ranked opponent either. However, if he continues to keep winning and finish people like he’s done in his last two fights, it’ll only be a matter of time.
As for the liver kick he landed on Swanson? That’s something he’s become accustomed to for a while now.
“I’ve been in this moment many times with my kick,” Chikadze added. “My liver kick – my ‘Giga kick’ – this type of kick that you hurt somebody but they’re still not unconscious, they still feel everything and they can see it. It kind of blocks your body to do everything.
“I’ve been doing this in karate and kickboxing and I’ve had this type of experience every time. When I felt that, I realized I had already won the fight. I saw what the referee was doing and because he did’t stop me I continued just to make him think that it’s over.”
What do you think of Chikadze’s chances against the elite?