Eddie Alvarez went to the hospital to get his left eye stitched up following his title-regaining win over Michael Chandler at Bellator 106. Right as the once and current champ was leaving the Long Beach Arena, MMA H.E.A.T. caught up with his wrestling coach, former Olympic medalist Kenny Monday, to discuss how they were able to edge talented wrestler Chandler:
“It was close. I think we did enough in the end to win. We knew we had to have that fifth round, and I think we had the fifth round. Mike’s tough. Both guys are tough. I haven’t seen a fight like that since their last fight. We knew that Chandler was gonna try to take him down. That was the gameplan to limit his takedowns. We even took him down.”
Indeed it was close. Many still think that Chandler won the fight three rounds to two. A trilogy-ending fight is already being discussed, with Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney looking at the company’s first pay-per-view as the venue.
Not too many people gave Alvarez the edge prior to last night’s bout, but his work with Monday and the rest of the Blackzilians is appearing to pay big dividends. He was able to defeat one of the world’s best lightweights after a lengthy layoff; some say it was poetic justice after his messy contract dispute with Bellator.
In any case, Alvarez proved that he could hang with top-level wrestlers last night. He’s back on top and ready to keep his momentum rolling with a solid coaching staff in place. Will there be an immediate rematch?