Colby Covington is willing to entertain a fight with Khamzat Chimaev, but not until he proves himself.

Unbeaten star Chimaev doesn’t lack confidence, having called out the likes of Covington, UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman, and even UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya.

In a recent interview with BT Sport, Covington (16-3 MMA, 11-3 UFC) was asked about Chimaev (10-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC), but the former interim welterweight champion was rather dismissive of “Borz’s” accomplishments.

“Earn your way up and no problem – I’ll kick you right back down,” Covington said. “I love destroying hype trains. I’m going to destroy one hype train this weekend in (Jorge) Masvidal. He’s never going to be the same ever again and no one is going to care about his fights.”

Covington headlines Saturday’s UFC 272 event against former best friend, now foe Masvidal (35-15 MMA, 12-8 UFC), while Chimaev is slated to face former title challenger Gilbert Burns at UFC 273 in April.

A win over Burns would certainly make Chimaev a player at 170 pounds, but until then, Covington is not sold.

“With c**shot (Chimaev), earn your way up,” Covington said. “Win some big, formidable fights and we can talk. But until then, stop trying to hype this kid up. These hype jobs they can get really hurt inside this octagon.”

A potential fight between Covington and Chimaev has already been brewing, with the pair trading barbs in the past. But first, both men have pivotal fights coming up in which they’ll look to continue staking their claim in the stacked welterweight division.

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