Islam Makhachev Responds To Michael Chandler, Welcomes ‘Easy Money’ Vacant Title Fight Next

Islam Makhachev
Mandatory Credit: Chris Unger - Zuffa LLC

Finding himself on the receiving end of a rather surprising call out from recent big-winner, one-time title challenger, Michael Chandler, streaking lightweight contender, Islam Makhachev has welcomed the opportunity to face the Missouri native in a vacant championship fight next.

Islam Makhachev, who has landed a whopping 10 consecutive victories at 155lbs – just one shy from former undisputed champion, Charles Oliveira’s current division record of 11, has been linked to a vacant title fight since the championship became void back in May. 

The American Kickboxing Academy staple headlined a UFC Vegas 49 event back in February against short-notice replacement, Bobby Green, with the #4 ranked contender turning in a rather one-sided first round TKO win after a series of ground strikes. 

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As for Chandler, the Kill Cliff FC mainstay featured on the main card of UFC 274 back in May, stopping former interim lightweight champion, Tony Ferguson with a devastating second round, front kick knockout after giving up the first frame.

With the lightweight title up for grabs for top contenders, Oliveira has weighed up fighting the likes of Makhachev and former two-weight gold holder, Conor McGregor next in a vacant title fight, however, significant movement on each fight has yet to occur.

With the semi-log jam at 155lbs, Chandler offered to fight Islam Makhachev next for vacant spoils, urging Oliveira to chase his “so-called superfight” against McGregor instead.

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“Hey, Charles (Oliveira), do your thing, bro,” Michael Chandler posted on his Instagram story. “Wait till Conor (McGregor) comes back, you deserve it. On a couple fight win streak, smashing through everybody. Why don’t you sit out? Wait for Conor to come back, I’ll keep the division warm, I’ll keep the division going. I’ll fight Islam (Makhachev) next – I’ll fight Islam for the title.” 

“And then whenever you get your so-called ‘superfight’, do your thing, get it out of your system, then you can come back to our division. See you at the top.”

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Islam Makhachev welcomes the chance to fight Michael Chandler for vacant gold

Responding to Chandler’s call out, Makhachev welcomed the opportunity to face the veteran lightweight staple, insisting that the fight would land him “easy money”.

“Easy money…” Islam Makhachev tweeted in response to Michael Chandler. “Title is the goal, no matter who. Let’s go. @MikeChandlerMMA @ufc.” 

Enjoying a thoroughly roughshod run akin to Oliveira, the division standouts have been continually linked to a potential vacant title offing next, in the form of a championship clash in the promotion’s rumored January return to the former’s native Brazil.

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.