Michael Chandler Says He Almost ‘Lost Faith’ on Getting the UFC Contract Done

Published 01/13/2021, 6:26 AM EST
Michael Chandler at Bellator 120


UFC lightweight Michael Chandler spoke out to MMA on Point ahead of his UFC 257 co-main event feature bout. ‘Iron’ Chandler will take on Dan Hooker in a fight that is pivotal for the divisional title landscape. The fight card is being headlined by Dustin Poirier vs Conor McGregor 2, the grudge match from September 2014.

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Michael Chandler made a recent media stop in Nashville, Tennessee, and before making his way to Abu Dhabi’s Etihad arena. The former Bellator MMA lightweight champion had plenty to say heading into his highly anticipated promotional debut. He came in as one of the most highly touted free-agents in and fans are excited to see his progress.

Michael Chandler on actualizing a UFC championship run

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The 3-time Bellator champ came in as an outspoken fighter and made a powerful impact in a short time. Chandler passionately explained that he was making his way towards the UFC after a lot of doubt. He also candidly explained that it wasn’t the right time for him to make the move a few years earlier.

“To be honest with you, I kind of lost faith a little bit that it was ever going to unfold at the right time. Have the timing be right and have the door be open at the right time, I really did. I told you about my conversation with Dana and I told him I hadn’t ever not fought in the UFC because I didn’t want to fight in the UFC, it just really never worked out that way. All you can do is make the best decision that you can and with the information you have, then you think about it,  you pray about it, you seek wise counsel about it and you make the best decision.”

“I did that, time and time again with Bellator, this time it made sense, but two years ago I wouldn’t have been ready to be the superstar that the UFC can make me. Four years ago, definitely not, I was going through things, ups, and downs in the career. There was also in the UFC Conor going off and boxing, then you had growth of the trash-talking generation…I just want to be authentically myself, it worked out really well and for a while, I lost faith it was gonna happen.”

‘I don’t feel much pressure’- Chandler

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Moreover, Michael Chandler also went into the reality of finally getting ready to lace up the gloves on fight night. It is a moment that has been built up for a long time is upon him, and he’s ready for the intensity.

SAITAMA, JAPAN – DECEMBER 29: Michael Chandler and Sidney Outlaw compete in the bout during the Bellator Japan – Fedor v Rampage at Saitama Super Arena on December 29, 2019 in Saitama, Japan. (Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images)

“It worked out perfectly, couple days away from stepping inside the UFC octagon, wearing the UFC shorts, the UFC gloves for the first time. It’s going to be cool, I don’t feel much pressure, I’m going to go out there and perform. May the best man win.”

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January 23, 2021, will be the proving ground for Chandler as fans wish to see him perform in the UFC.  Moreover, the number of eyeballs that will be on the card is staggering considering that McGregor also makes his return at UFC257.

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Darryl Pinto

1775 articles

Darryl Pinto is a senior MMA writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his graduate degree in Mass Media (with a specialization in Journalism) out of Xavier’s College and has a year's experience in his current role. Darryl specializes in predictions, reporting, and covering UFC events live.

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