Merab Dvalishvili has made the rounds on the internet today after being easily lifted in a playful sparring session with Katarina Kavaleva.
The Georgia-born, New Yorker is in a great run of form. Having just retired long-time featherweight king Jose Aldo, he sits within touching distance of a title shot. In Kavaleva though, he seems to have met his match.
The pair can be seen on video playfully jousting and jabbing at each other. Dvalishvili seems to be having trouble getting inside the 6-foot-5 kickboxer’s reach, so shoots half-heartedly for a few takedowns.
Much to everyone’s surprise, Kaveleva grabs him around the waist and hoists him up into a powerbomb-type position. The Belarusian fights at heavyweight in her chosen sport and is a world champion. Dvalishvili must have seen this as one power play too many, as shortly after, he effortlessly hits his female counterpart with a single-leg takedown.
Watch: Dvalishvili Getting Hoisted In The Air
Posted by Matysek on Twitter, the footage shows Dvalishvili playing around while Kaveleva shows off her striking game. She is bigger than any female to ever fight in the UFC, and that will most likely never change.
Dvalishvili is seen sporting a huge smile throughout the odd experience. He must now be in a very select group of men to be deadlifted by a giant female combat sports athlete.
Dvalishvili sits ranked third in the 135-pound division. He is in a strange spot as of now. Currently, he is helping the champion of his division, Aljamain Sterling prepare for another title defense in Abu Dhabi.
Sterling has recently hinted at the idea of a featherweight move to allow Merab the chance at a title shot. The pair are great friends and teammates and have ruled out a prospective fight indefinitely. For now, though, they focus on TJ Dillashaw.
Be Honest, could Kavaleva lift you as she did to Dvalishvili?