Welcome to Midnight Mania!
Michael Chandler’s signing to the UFC is arguably the promotion’s biggest pickup of the year. He joins an already talented Lightweight division, but with Khabib Nurmagomedov unexpectedly retiring, maybe now is the perfect time to increase the division even further! The UFC is treating Chandler’s signing as a major move, injecting him straight into the title mix as a backup of the Lightweight title last week.
Now that UFC 254 is over, who is he going to fight?
Chandler gave his take on lightweight while speaking with The Schmo, “There are a lot of different options right now,” Chandler said (transcribed via MMAFighting). “I think with the look of the scenery – you had Gaethje and Khabib with Khabib as the lightweight champion after tonight – I was thinking of Tony Ferguson. But now you have Jon Anik and Justin Gaethje talking after the fight. Gaethje is a player. Justin Gaethje is one of the biggest contenders we’ll ever get to groom the Octagon. . . (and) he said he was ready in six to eight weeks, he was ready to fight again. He didn’t take that much damage in this fight, which is great. I’m ready in six to eight weeks, he’s ready in six to eight weeks, there’s a fight against Tony Ferguson, there’s The Ultimate Fighter coming up, I know it’s going to be a big start for ESPN. The climax in a lightweight title shot seems like nonstop action for ESPN, so I’d love to be a part of that as well. So we’ll see what happens.
More than anything else, Chandler pursues the excitement factor of an opposing “The Highlight” fight, which would surely guarantee at least a bonus for someone!
“At this point, with how everything has changed tonight, I think a fight with Justin Gaethje has always excited me more than anyone in the entire division,” Chandler concluded. “More than Conor or Khabib, even if the mystique of beating Khabib and taking his 0 is something special, or fighting Conor on the most profitable card of the year and earning the most money, the panties red as he likes to call it. These are all wonderful, but when it comes to just a direct competitor against a competitor, a hand to hand fight, a mano a mano, an American blue collar wrestler in a small town against a small town American blue collar wrestler, it’s me and Justin Gaethje caged against each other, so it’s exciting for me.
In the end, the fight does indeed make sense if Gaethje seeks a quick turnaround. However, Ferguson is still waiting in the ranks and apparently ready to go, so “El Cucuy” can have the first dibs on the former Bellator champion.
One thing is for sure: the light weight is always stacked!
MMAmania.com struggles to embed Instagram clips for some reason (we’re working on it!), So stealing Instagram clips that have been posted on Twitter is the best I can do. Either way, Conor McGregor is going to work!
I’m not sure if I believe it or not, but the idea of Khabib choosing to subdue Justin Gaethje with a specific move is great… but is it too early to say that maybe Gaethje should train more BJJs? Khabib is Khabib, but he immediately gave up terrible positions.
It is a great tragedy of our time that Khabib vs. Ferguson was stolen from us by the MMA gods themselves. “El Cucuy” still has hope, apparently!
Chase Hooper tried to make a joke on Borat after Shavkat Rakhmonov’s first win (WATCH HIM!), And he paid for it.
UFC Europe really didn’t have to make Jessica Eye like that.
Alex Oliveira faced more than we thought during fight week.
Sending positive thoughts to Alex ‘Cowboy’ Oliveira from UFC. His manager Alex Davis (@Alexdavismma) tells me that Oliveira’s 2-month-old son fell ill last week and was admitted to an intensive care unit. Oliveira uses her UFC 254 fight money to transfer it to a private hospital.
– Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) October 26, 2020
Briefs, rips and knockout clips
Speaking of Rakhmonov, here is the welterweight countering a different takedown with yet another stylish M-1 submission!
Brutal, determined focus on destroying the lead leg here:
Dropping the jab is always cool!
I received this video recently, and it is a true representation of my home every night.
Midnight Music: I have a bunch of new stuff to check out, but that didn’t happen today, so here’s an old psychic rock classic.
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts craze is still going on.