Former Bellator lightweight champion, Michael Chandler, made his much-anticipated UFC debut in the co-main event of UFC 257. ‘Iron’ finished his Kiwi counterpart Dan Hooker in emphatic fashion midway through the first round. It was a signature knockout on Chandler’s part.
He then proceeded to call out Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier, and Khabib Nurmagomedov in style. Nurmagomedov’s coach Javier Mendez recently shared his thoughts on Chandler’s UFC debut and subsequent call outs.
In a conversation with Submission Radio, he said, “He starches Hooker and I bet against that. I thought Hooker was gonna win. I didn’t know but I did favor Hooker. So Michael Chandler, come on, starching them and then his after speech. I think it was incredible. I think it was awesome. I think the way he did it I I respect Michael chandler, I hope he does really well because you know, I liked what he did at the end how he did the speech. It was cool,” said Mendez.
Chandler did make a solid impression in his first-ever Octagon appearance. Many counted him out as a hype job and favored ‘The Hangman’. But, despite being known for his wrestling prowess, ‘Iron’ showed how dangerous he is with his hands as he caught Hooker with a looping overhand left and finished via ground and pound.
Chandler has made his aspirations clear. His goal is to become a UFC champion. But, it’s highly unlikely he will get a shot at the title after just one win in the promotion.
Khabib Nurmagomedov is seemingly retired, but there are perennial contenders like Charles Oliveira, Justin Gaethje, and more waiting in the wings. Nevertheless, the UFC no.4 ranked lightweight, Chandler, deserves a top contender in his next outing.
Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier could be up for a trilogy fight as they look to set the score once and for all. A fight against Gaethje or Oliveira makes the most sense for Chandler in current circumstances.
After a blistering start to his UFC stint, ‘Iron‘ will be looking to get to the gold as quickly as possible. Another win over a top contender will almost guarantee him a chance to challenge for the highest prize in MMA.
Can Chandler become a UFC champion? What did you make of his performance against Dan Hooker at UFC 257?
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