MOSCOW – The only thing that’s holding back Mairbek Taisumov’s UFC career is his visa status.
Taisumov, a resident of Vienna, Austria who hails from Grozny, Chechnya, continues to wait for good news from his immigration attorneys. They tell him he should eventually get a visa, but can’t offer much else in the way of information.
“Before, I had a visa and fought in America and paid taxes,” Taisumov (27-5 MMA, 6-1 UFC), who on Saturday meets Desmond Green (21-7 MMA, 2-2 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 136, told MMAjunkie. “Everything was OK. But now, I can’t get it.
“It’s so difficult to get a visa for the U.S. I’m not a criminal. I’m not sure why they don’t give me a visa, but hopefully I’ll get it.”
UFC Fight Night 136 takes place Saturday at Olympic Stadium in Moscow, Russia. The entire event streams live on UFC Fight Pass.
A second job means Taisumov doesn’t struggle to pay his bills while he waits. It’s the lack of answers and his desire to be UFC champion that leaves him frustrated.
On three occasions, he’s had scheduled fights taken away because of his visa status. Most recently, a meeting with Evan Dunham at UFC 223 was canceled. The UFC once hired two attorneys to get him into the U.S. for a bout a UFC 203. They were unsuccessful at removing the roadblock.
“It’s very painful,” he said. “Because of one piece of paper, I can’t fight in the U.S. I can’t fight the top guys, the ranked guys.
“I don’t have any injuries. All this year, I was training and asking for a fight. I hope somebody I will have this visa. The visa makes a big problem for me and my career.”
Taisumov said he’s not in the UFC to become rich. He only wants to face the best competition and win. With five UFC wins under his belt, he should be in line for a big fight.
Instead, he’ll continue to toil on cards overseas as he waits for a break in his case. (Earlier today, though, he badly missed weight for his fight with Green. Taisumov came in at 161 pounds and will surrender 40 percent of his fight purse to his opponent Saturday night.)
“I’m fighting to be a champion, and I believe I can be a champion,” he said. “This is my motivation.
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: UFC Moscow: Mairbek Taisumov gives an update on his quest to get a U.S. visa