Who Wants To Fight Michael Chandler?
One top-ranked UFC lightweight hopes to get a crack at Michael Chandler.
The UFC has wasted little time putting Chandler in the limelight. The promotion signed Chandler after the three-time Bellator Lightweight Champion tested free agency. He will be on standby in case a UFC 254 headliner is forced off the card. The main event will be a title unification bout between champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and interim titleholder Justin Gaethje.
Number four-ranked UFC lightweight, Dan Hooker, spoke to the folks at Submission Radio and gave his thoughts on the signing of Chandler. “The Hangman” said he’s more than willing to share the Octagon with Chandler (h/t MMAFighting.com).
“Well, it was hard when people were speculating it and saying about the fight, it’s hard to know how much stock the UFC is putting into someone that’s coming from another organization,” Hooker said. “But for him to now be signed to the organization and being the fill-in for the title shot, now I know. Now I’m certain of how much stock [they’re putting in]. The UFC is putting a lot of stock in on this kid. So, I would love to be the guy to welcomes him to the UFC, knees his chin off, sends him back to the B-Leagues.”
Chandler last competed on August 7. He went one-on-one with Benson Henderson in a rematch. Chandler scored the first-round knockout victory. While Chandler made it clear that he’d test free agency, some found it hard to believe he’d jump ship as he had been with Bellator since September 2010.
Hooker is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Dustin Poirier in a “Fight of the Year” candidate. The defeat snapped Hooker’s three-fight winning streak. “The Hangman” has been calling for bouts with Tony Ferguson and Charles Oliveira. With Chandler’s name being thrown in, it’ll be interesting to see if Hooker will get any of the opponents he’s asking for.