Michael Chandler Next Fight Almost Set- Details Yet To Be Finalized

Published 03/16/2021, 12:26 AM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JANUARY 23: Michael Chandler battles Dan Hooker during the UFC 257 event at UFC Fight Island on January 23, 2021 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)


Michael Chandler capitalized on his debut against Dan Hooker at UFC 257 as ‘Iron’ earned a knockout finish at the first pay-per-view of 2021. And now, it seems like the former Bellator MMA lightweight champion is set for his second outing inside the Octagon. Interestingly, his opponent will be former interim UFC lightweight champion Justin Gaethje.

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‘The Highlight’ last fought at UFC 254 as he lost to Khabib Nurmagomedov. The reported match-up was confirmed by Ariel Helwani in a recent episode of the DC & Helwani show.

However, any further details, like the date and venue of the fight are not yet known, and the UFC hasn’t mentioned anything about it officially.

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Some crucial fights have been recently booked in the lightweight division of the UFC. Tony Ferguson will return at UFC 262 as the former interim champion faces Beneil Dariush in an exciting match-up. The trilogy fight between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier is almost certain to happen later this year.

And now with Chandler vs Gaethje reportedly in the works, the whole landscape of the lightweight division has gotten much more interesting. The UFC is possibly looking to crown a new champion in the 155lbs division as champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has revealed he doesn’t intend to fight again.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JANUARY 23: Michael Chandler battles Dan Hooker during the UFC 257 event at UFC Fight Island on January 23, 2021 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Also, Nurmagomedov’s brother Islam Makhachev is looking for a fight after defeating Drew Dober in spectacular fashion at UFC 259. Former lightweight champion, Rafael Dos Anjos, and Makhachev are willing to fight each other. However, with Dos Anjos having to undergo surgery, that fight might materialize later this year.

Michael Chandler vs Justin Gaethje: what’s on the stakes?

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Iron‘ is on a mission to become the UFC’s lightweight champion. And after his spectacular debut, he has made his case stronger. Gaethje, on the other hand, is looking for another bite at the gold. However, it’s unlikely for the UFC to make this a title fight. But the winner will be almost certain for a shot at the lightweight throne next.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 25: (R-L) Justin Gaethje kicks Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia in their lightweight title bout during the UFC 254 event on October 25, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Also, Chandler will have a household name in Gaethje as his opponent. And a win will raise his stocks even more. ‘The Highlight‘ too will have a great opportunity against a former world champion to get back in the win column. So, the stakes will be very high for both men with a possible championship opportunity as the reward.

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Who will get the win? Chandler or Gaethje? Who’s your early pick?

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Apratim Banerjee

686 articles

Apratim Banerjee is an MMA author for EssentiallySports and has been writing professionally for almost a year. Before his current gig, Apratim worked as a UFC writer for Sportskeeda. A long-time MMA fan, Apratim has developed a critical eye for the sport that has helped him transfer his vast knowledge to his copies and give hardcore and casual readers a detailed insight into the fights and fighters.

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