Michael Chandler Says Charles Oliveira Will Be on the Backfoot as Soon as They Fight

Published 03/31/2021, 9:17 AM EDT


UFC lightweight Michael Chandler sat down with Brett Okamoto just over a month away from his UFC 262 contest. ‘Iron’ Chandler takes on Charles Oliveira for the vacant lightweight belt on May 15 in Houston, Texas. Chandler made his debut at the start of the year and earned a statement KO win over Dan Hooker.

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Chiefly, Michael Chandler has been a force to be reckoned with ever since he actualized his abilities in Bellator MMA. Fans have been champing at the bit to see him finally make his way to the UFC’s octagon. Chandler now has the ability to truly go down as one of the best lightweights to ever do it.

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Michael Chandler dissects Charles Oliveira as an opponent

The former three-time Bellator MMA lightweight champion looked into the varied skill set that Oliveira brings to the table. ‘Do Bronx’ captured the attention of the MMA world when he stomped all over Tony Ferguson at UFC 256. He’s run right through the division and made many fans believe he’s the man who can beat Khabib Nurmagomedov.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 12: (L-R) Charles Oliveira of Brazil punches Tony Ferguson in their lightweight bout during the UFC 256 event at UFC APEX on December 12, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

“Oliveira is a tall test, he’s a guy who is on a huge win streak. When you got a guy who has been able to string together as many fights as he has in a row in the UFC… There’s a high level of confidence that comes with that. Of course, I’m coming off a big win, kicking down the door during my debut and knocking out number 5 Dan Hooker.

“But Charles Oliveira is on a 7-8 fight win streak, he’s just as confident as I am. He’s skilled everywhere, he’s very dangerous in the submission game, he’s very dangerous on the ground. His striking is ever-improving. More than anything, I just got to put together a great game plan, I’m going to be exactly who I am.”

‘Iron’ Chandler goes in on his formula for victory at UFC 262

Apart from simply recognizing Oliveira as a threat, Michael Chandler also puts a lot of stock in his own abilities. With over 12 years invested in the fight game, Chandler has seen it all and believes he has what it takes. ‘Iron’ Mike laid out a rough game plan that would bring him to a comfortable victory.

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)

“For me, I don’t change anything, I’m excited to compete against him… I think he’s the perfect opponent for me in a lot of ways. Think I go out there, get my hands on him. I think he’ll know from the first exchange that he’s dealing with a different guy…they stand in front of me, they’re going to be on their back foot.

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“Charles Oliveira is going to be no different. He’s going to be on the backfoot, he going to be overreacting, and I’m going to land shots. Pick him up, put him down if I have to, but most likely knock him out in the first or second round.”

UFC 262 will usher in a new era in the absence of arguably the greatest lightweight champion the world has seen- Khabib Nurmagomedov. For Chandler, he’s confident that he’ll get the job done and is looking to potentially convince Nurmagomedov to make a comeback.

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Darryl Pinto

1797 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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