Bellator Champ Michael Chandler Inks 8 Fight Extension
Deal Makes Chandler “One of the Highest Paid Lightweights in MMA”
By FCF Staff
Less than a week away from Michael Chandler’s next title defence versus David Rickels on July 31st, the promotion has announced it’s signed the lightweight champion to an eight fight extension.
In a press release announcing the deal, Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney was quoted saying:
“In all my years in combat sports, I’ve never seen the growth and development in a fighter like we’ve all witnessed with Michael Chandler. I believe Michael is the best lightweight in MMA. And, given that, I felt it was paramount to keep Michael at Bellator for the long term. Both inside and outside the cage, Michael is a tremendous representative for our Bellator. And, now as one of the highest paid lightweights in MMA, he’s without question earned that distinction.”
Chandler (11-0) has won eight straight bouts since signing with Bellator in 2010, and the 27 year-old fighter has defeated established lightweights like Eddie Alvarez, Patricky Freire and Rick Hawn during that stretch.
“Since I signed with Bellator back in 2010, Bjorn laid out a plan for me of how he saw my career progressing and what type of levels we could reach together, and everything has come true,” Chandler said. “I couldn’t be happier with the situation I’m in right now. Bellator is my home, it’s where I want to be, and it’s where I’m going to continue to defend my belt. Over the last few months you’ve continued to see Bellator go out and sign some of the best talent in the world, and the tournaments continue to be loaded with talent that I’m ready to take on. I believe in this format and what Bellator is doing, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it. My focus right now is solely on David Rickels, and making sure we put on a show July 31st.”
The upcoming, Bellator 97 card will be hosted by the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho , New Mexico, and will be broadcast on SPIKE.