Michael Chandler took the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) by storm when he knocked out Dan Hooker right at the beginning of 2021. Since then, the former Bellator champion fought for the vacant lightweight championship against Charles Oliveira. He also had a massively entertaining fight against Justin Gaethje which was the fight of the year for many fans.
His last fight took place on November 6 of last year. Since that slugfest, Michael Chandler has maintained a pretty low profile. In a recent interview with Ariel Helwani on MMA Fighting’s YouTube channel, the 35-year old revealed who he wants to fight next.
In the interview, Michael revealed he wants to either fight Conor McGregor or Tony Ferguson. According to him, the latter is the more likely option as Ferguson is the only one to show interest in the fight publicly. But McGregor would be the preferred option even though it’s a ‘longshot’.
However, one other fighter that Michael Chandler wants to fight is Nate Diaz. Although Chandler has acknowledged the contract negotiation between the younger Diaz brother and the UFC, he stills wants that fight sometime in 2022.
Michael Chandler wants Nate Diaz at Welterweight
In the interview, one-time lightweight title contender revealed, “Nobody has ever talked about me and Nate Diaz fighting. For some reason, I’m like, ‘Me and Nate Diaz should share the Octagon sometime.’ I know his contract is coming to a close.”
Michael Chandler continued, “He’s looking to fight (Dustin) Poirier. That is a fight that he said that he wants. But then he says he calls UFC and UFC says Poirier sucks. So we’ll throw Nate Diaz’s name in the hat.”
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“And I’d love to fight at 170 (Welterweight) instead of 155 (Lightweight), I’ll tell you that much…. When I fight Diaz, it’ll be at 170 for sure. I have been competing in the 150s since I was a senior in high school…. I don’t want to make 155 unless it’s Conor or for a title…. We’ll see what happens.”
Although there is no concrete news on which way the UFC will lean for Nate Diaz‘s final fight, one can assume that the promotion will look to get one big fight out of him. Diaz has a potential trilogy bout with Conor McGregor. A fight against Dustin Poirier would be big as well. Hence, the fight against Michael Chandler is not high on UFC’s priority.