Michael Chandler is currently preparing to face Justin Gaethje at UFC 268. However, recently Chandler revealed he won’t be vaccinated against COVID-19 in time for that event, which is currently scheduled to take place at New York City; a jurisdiction that requires vaccination for most public indoors activities.
Chandler has also had time to chat about the state of the UFC lightweight division. Recently he sat down with Helen Yee to discuss a number of characters currently inhabiting the upper echelon of the weight class.
When the talk came around to Dustin Poirier, who recently defeated Conor McGregor and earned number one contender status, Chandler recommended that the ‘Diamond’ not set his sights on current champ Charles Oliveira.
“Man, if I’m Dustin Poirier, I’m just waiting for Conor 4,” said Chandler (ht MMA News). “If Poirier goes and wins the title, can Conor come right back and fight Poirier if he has the title? Crazier things have happened. So if I’m Poirier, I’m just waiting out and waiting for Conor 4, especially after he said numerous things about my wife and my kids and killing me, all that kind of stuff. But I also know, and this is a testament to Poirier as a competitor, he wants to win the ultimate prize in mixed martial arts. He’s been an interim champion, but he hasn’t full-fledged, 100% undisputed champion. So I think the competitor in him will go fight Charles Oliveira.”
Chandler’s last fight was a defeat to Oliveira for the vacant UFC lightweight title. Having been in there with ‘Do Bronx’, Chandler offered his thoughts on how a Poirier vs. Oliveira fight might look.
“I think they’re both well-rounded. I think Poirier’s got a little bit more of kind of that dog in him, when the fight gets in the thick of it, obviously, Charles Oliveira beat me in the second round, very soon into the second round, so we didn’t really see a lot of longevity in a fight like that. We saw him go through rounds with Tony Ferguson, but that was muchly a one-sided affair. I think a fight with Dustin Poirier, he puts hands on him pretty solidly those first couple rounds and kinda starts to put it on Charles. I think Poirier wins that fight by third/fourth-round finish. If they do go all five, Poirier wins the decision.”