Bellator 197 main event winner Michael Chandler doesn’t think Brent Primus has any interest in facing him with the lightweight title on the line.
It’s rare for a former champion to be on a solid win streak, clearly set up for a title shot, but not expecting to get it. Yet that’s where Michael Chandler is these days. Despite a big win against Brandon Girtz at Bellator 197 on Friday in St. Charles, MO., Chandler doesn’t believe the lightweight title is neigh. Mainly because he doesn’t believe the man holding it has any desire to fight him.
Chandler addressed the media following the bout, discussing his win against Girtz, and Bellator’s lightweight champion — whom he refused to acknowledge, or at the very least name.
First up, one his first round finish of Brandon Girtz:
“I used to, and if you guys have followed me for a while, I used to get into fights, and get in to the fight,” he said of his fight style over the years. “I wanted the fight to happen. It’s from my wrestling roots, it’s from my wrestling background. I want to get my hands on you, I’m not content unless I have my hands on you and I’m going forward and I’m trying to score. And that, a lot of times in this sport, leads to a lot of danger, a lot of missed opportunities, a lot of damage, running into shots, taking damage I don’t need to.”
It’s something he avoided against Girtz, fighting smart, instead of “young and dumb.”
“I felt like I was in control of the fight, then all of a sudden we went to the ground, and the rest is history,” Chandler summed up the finishing sequence of his main event battle with Girtz on Friday.
That said, “I still think I’m the most violent man in MMA,” Chandler opined. “Eddie Alvarez is out there telling everybody he’s the most violent man in MMA, I think I’m still the most violent man in MMA. Just because I know that there’s a brake pedal now a little bit, just because I can fight with my brains rather than just my brawn, doesn’t mean I’m not the most violent man in MMA.”
So what’s next for Chandler? Well, he, for one, doesn’t believe it’ll be Brent Primus. In fact, when told Primus was tweeting during the bout, Chandler pretended not to know who Primus was. “Brent who? Brent Primus? Never heard of him.”
“Unfortunately the man that stepped into the cage with me at Madison Square Garden is a part-time fight,” Chandler later stated. “He was on maternity leave as soon as that fight happened. He wanted a six month, eight month maternity leave, and I wanted to fight. I feed my family with this, I take this very seriously, I have two mouths to feed at home. Two people whose lives depend on me.”
“I wanted to step back into the cage, so what did I do?” he continued, “I took on the scariest prospect in the lightweight division, Yamauchi, with 18 submission wins. Then all of a sudden, he gets hurt again, the wannabe champion gets hurt again, now I have to step into the cage with Brandon Girtz, a very tough opponent.
“This is just the fight game, this is what happens” Chandler added. “We saw it last week at UFC 223, Khabib fought Al Iaquinta on twelve hours notice, sixteen hours notice. You’ve just got to be ready.”
“We’ll see what’s next,” he said of what comes next, and whether it’s a title shot. “I don’t think that belt is coming to me any time soon. Because I don’t think the man who has it, or is holding onto it for dear life, wants to step into the cage and chance losing it.”
Check out the full post-fight scrum from Bellator 197 with Michael Chandler above!