Due to a three fight losing streak, the stock of Michael Chandler may have dropped, but the former Bellator champ still believes he’s one of the best lightweights in MMA.
Yes, it wasn’t that long ago really, when Chandler was widley considered to be one of the planet’s best 155érs. After all, the accomplished wrestler went 12-0 after transitioning into fighting, defeated Eddie Alvarez, and was Bellator’s reigning champ.
In November, 2013, however, Chandler dropped a split decision to Alvarez in their rematch. Since then, the 29 year-old has been decisioned by current champ Will Brooks, and was stopped by the latter in their second meeting last November.
Well, at Bellator 138 tonight in St. Louis, Chandler is booked to fight Derek Campos. While speaking to MMA Fighting.com recently about the bout, Chandler made it clear that his confidence hasn’t been diminished by his recent setbacks:
“At the end of the day, I’m a great competitor,” Chandler said. “I’m a great fighter. I still feel like I’m the best lightweight in the world. I just have to go out there and perform. And if I do that, there’s nobody in the lightweight division, in my opinion, that can beat me.”
Of course it’s not surprising to hear a fighter of Chandler’s calibre talk this way, and when you look at his losses, it’s pretty understandable. Alvarez has long been regarded as one of the best 155érs in the game, and Chandler narrowly lost their rematch.
Brooks may not be a household name quite yet, but he’s a ridiculously well rounded fighter, who is also one of the sport’s top lightweights. So, it’s not like Chandler has been dropping bouts to unproven competition or guys who are past their prime.,
Tonight is huge for Chandler, however, and it will be interesting to see what kind of approach he takes. Will he come out guns blazing? Or fight more conservatively since there’s a lot riding on the line?
Bellator 138 will be hosted by the Scottrade Center, and in the main event Kimbo Slice will take on Ken Shamrock.