Michael Chandler has apologized for insinuating that Dustin Poirier quit against Charles Oliveira at UFC 269, admitting that his post-fight comments (see below) were ‘a little bit harsh’.
Broke him. #ufc269— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) December 12, 2021
I would never ever quit...I went out on my shield after being separated from consciousness, congrats to Oliveira... #ufc269— Michael Chandler (@MikeChandlerMMA) December 12, 2021
Chandler lost to Oliveira via second-round TKO in their lightweight title bout at UFC 262 but ‘Iron Mike’ never tapped when ‘Do Bronx’ took his back and looked for the submission in the first.
“I also got my back taken by Charles Oliveira. He almost had that choke locked up and I was able to fight out of it,” Chandler told MMA Fighting in a recent interview. “So I’ve been in that position. I was able to get out of it. I will admit, I will concede maybe using the word ‘quit’ was a little bit harsh, especially against one of the good guys. People are probably like how are you going to come at Dustin Poirier, he’s one of the best guys in MMA, right? It was just me.”
“More than anything, I guess it was the admiration, the jubilation of watching Charles Oliveira do what he did when nobody thought he was going to be able to do that except most of his fellow countrymen in Brazil and maybe a couple analysts and a couple of his fellow fighters, coupled with loving the sport even though I lost to Charles Oliveira, loving the sport and being pumped up on the sport. I’ll admit, it was probably a little bit too critical. But that’s kind of where I’m at on it.”
Chandler was looking to rebound from his stoppage loss to Oliveira with a victory over Justin Gaethje at UFC 268 but, despite his best efforts, came up short. The former three-time Bellator lightweight champ dropped a unanimous decision in a Fight of the Year candidate at Madison Square Garden, New York on Nov. 6, 2021.
Despite losing his last two fights, Chandler is #5 in the UFC lightweight rankings and considered by many to be one of the most dangerous and well-rounded fighters in the division.