Michael Chandler is officially ‘locked and loaded’ for his UFC debut, but the former three-time Bellator lightweight champion is still without an opponent.
Chandler was on standby for the UFC 254 main event between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson in October but, unfortunately for him, the fight went ahead as planned and ‘The Eagle’ ended up submitting ‘The Highlight’ in the second round to retain his lightweight title before announcing his retirement in the post-fight interview.
Chandler was then expected to fight Tony Ferguson at UFC 256 but, according to president Dana White, the 34-year-old MMA veteran is still recovering from his UFC 254 weight cut.
“The problem with Michael Chandler right now is he stepped up for that [Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje] fight and he cut weight, so he can’t turn around as fast as these other guys can right now,” White said. “We can’t do that to him. So, no hurry, take his time, get his body back together. We’ll get him something soon.
“Once we go back to Abu Dhabi, there’s going to be a lot of big fights coming up here, so he’ll be a part of something.”
According to a recent Instagram post, however, Chandler appears to have fully recovered and is gearing up for his first fight under the UFC banner.
“Locked and loaded. Camp number 28 starts today. – See you at the top!” Chandler posted on Monday.
With Ferguson fully booked against Charles Oliveira, expect Chandler to take on either Justin Gaethje or Dan Hooker in his promotional debut.
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