Despite the uncertainty surrounding his long-teased fight with Irish megastar Conor McGregor, Michael Chandler is staying patient and believes his time against the former two-division titleholder will come.
Earlier this year, UFC CEO Dana White revealed that Chandler and McGregor would square off inside the Octagon following their stint as opposing coaches on the 31st season of The Ultimate Fighter. With the clock set to run out on 2023 in a few short weeks, fight fans are still waiting to hear any progress on booking McGregor’s so-called “greatest comeback in combat sports history.”
In a video clip shared by MMA Junkie on X, Chandler responded to McGregor’s constant waffling and Coach John Kavanagh’s claim that the UFC is pushing the Irishman’s return to summer 2024.
“I gotta hat tip to Conor and Coach Kavanagh,” Chandler said. “You were eluding to Coach Kavanagh talking bout July and all this other stuff. These guys are master manipulators of the storyline. They love to say little things that are true or are not true, or they’re so blatantly obvious that they sound like they’re not true.
“Dropping little breadcrumbs, making you guys, the media, myself, the opponent, and put everybody in the entire world on pins and needles wondering what the real information is. These guys are very good at the art of mental warfare and saying whatever they need to. Whether it be calling out other fighters, or talking about the trilogy with Nate Diaz. Pushing it back to July, then talking about a fight in December. Then talking about the UFC’s keeping me from my livelihood. All these different things that may or may not be true.“
Michael Chandler is keeping himself prepared
With recent reports even suggesting that McGregor’s return to the Octagon may not even include Chandler altogether, the former Bellator MMA champ chooses to stay the course and continue preparing for what would undoubtedly be the biggest fight of his mixed martial arts career.
“I’m staying the course,” Chandler continued. “I’m focused on becoming the best version of myself for when I do get in there and compete against the greatest comeback in combat sports history, Conor keeps calling it, and I believe I finish him within the first two rounds and then we sip some tequila after.”
It has been a year since Chandler has competed inside the Octagon. ‘Iron’ is 2-3 since making his promotional debut, scoring impressive finishes against Dan Hooker and Tony Ferguson while falling to a murderer’s row of lightweight talent, including Charles Oliveira, Justin Gaethje, and Dustin Poirier.