Michael Chandler

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Michael Chandler
BornMichael Chandler Jr.
(1986-04-24) April 24, 1986 (age 32)
High Ridge, Missouri, U.S.
ResidenceNashville, Tennessee, U.S.
Height5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)
DivisionWelterweight (2010-2011)
Lightweight (2011-present)
Reach68 12 in (174 cm)
Fighting out ofBoca Raton, Florida, U.S.
TeamHard Knocks 365
WrestlingNCAA Division I Wrestling
Years active2009-present
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout7
By submission7
By decision4
By knockout2
By decision2
UniversityUniversity of Missouri
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Michael Chandler Jr. (born April 24, 1986) is an American mixed martial artist fighting in the lightweight division of Bellator MMA, where he is a former two-time Bellator Lightweight World Champion. He was also the winner of the Bellator Season Four: Lightweight Tournament. He is currently ranked as the #14 lightweight in the world by FightMatrix.com. He was the 2011 Breakthrough Fighter of the Year. He holds notable victories over former UFC Lightweight Champions Benson Henderson and Eddie Alvarez.


Chandler was born and raised in High Ridge, Missouri. He was born the second of four children to Michael Sr. and Betty Chandler. In high school, Chandler was on the honor roll every term, received three letters in football, and finished second at the Missouri State High School Championships his senior year for wrestling. He was voted the Most Valuable Wrestler during his senior season and was selected to the All-St. Louis Team.[1][2]

Upon graduating from Northwest High School in 2004, Chandler enrolled at the University of Missouri, walking onto the school's wrestling squad. While at Missouri Chandler was a four-time NCAA qualifier, collected 100 career wins, as well as earning fifth place at NCAA's earning Division 1 NCAA All-American honors. Chandler earned runner-up honors in the 2008 and 2009 Big 12 Championships and was awarded automatic bids to three of the four NCAA tournaments he competed in. Chandler compiled a 31-15 record against Big 12 opponents and a 100-40 overall record in his four years as a starter.[1] He majored in personal finance management services with a minor in real estate.[2]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Immediately after his wrestling career was over, Chandler began training mixed martial arts with Xtreme Couture. He opted out of competing as an amateur and in August 2009, Chandler made his professional MMA debut with a first-round TKO victory over Kyle Swadley.[3]


Chandler made his Strikeforce debut on November 20, 2009 at Strikeforce Challengers: Woodley vs. Bears where he fought Richard Bouphanouvong, He won the fight via TKO in round two.

His next fight in Strikeforce was on May 15, 2010 at Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery where he fought Sal Woods, He won the fight via submission in under a minute.[4]

Bellator Fighting Championships[edit]

Chandler made his Bellator debut on September 30, 2010, at Bellator 31, where he defeated Scott Stapp via TKO in the first round. The fight was contested at a catchweight for Chandler to test himself for the Lightweight division, all his previous bouts being in the welterweight division.

In his next Bellator appearance, Chandler fought on the Bellator 32 card against Chris Page in a welterweight contest. Chandler won the fight in the opening minute via submission (guillotine choke).

In February 2011, Bellator announced that Chandler would be a part of the Bellator Season Four Lightweight Tournament.[5] In the opening round of the tournament, Chandler fought Polish prospect, Marcin Held, at Bellator 36. Chandler won via technical submission after choking Held unconscious with an arm-triangle choke. The win moved Chandler into the semi-finals.[6]

Chandler then fought Lloyd Woodard at Bellator 40 and won via unanimous decision to move onto the finals of the tournament.

The tournament final took place at Bellator 44 where Chandler would face Team Nogueira product, Patricky Freire. Chandler utilized his wrestling skills, repeatedly taking down Freire and controlling the fight. He defeated Freire via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27) to win $100,000 and a shot at the Bellator Lightweight Championship versus Eddie Alvarez.

Lightweight Champion[edit]

Chandler was expected to compete for the Bellator Lightweight Championship at Bellator 54. However, Alvarez suffered an undisclosed injury and forcing the bout to be postponed until a later date.[7] Chandler/Alvarez was rescheduled to take place on November 19, 2011 at Bellator 58.[8] Chandler defeated Eddie Alvarez winning by rear naked choke in the fourth round. Chandler came in very aggressive in the first and second round. In the third round, Alvarez landed several shots stunning Chandler. In the fourth round, Chandler dropped Alvarez with a punch, took his back and forced the tapout.

In his first fight after winning the title, Chandler faced Japanese veteran Akihiro Gono in a non-title superfight at Bellator 67.[9] He won the fight via TKO at just 56 seconds into the first round.

Chandler made the first defense of his title against Bellator Season Six Lightweight Tournament Winner and former olympic judoka Rick Hawn, at Bellator 85 on January 17, 2013. He won the fight via submission in the second round.

Chandler was set to make the second defense of his title against Bellator Season Seven Lightweight Tournament Winner Dave Jansen. The fight was to headline Bellator 96 on June 19, 2013. However, on June 2, it was announced that Jansen had to pull out of the bout due to an injury. Chandler faced David Rickels at Bellator 97.[10] Chandler defeated Rickels via KO 44 seconds into the first round.

Title loss and return[edit]

A rematch with Eddie Alvarez took place on November 2, 2013 in the main event at Bellator 106.[11] Chandler lost the fight via split decision.

A third fight with Alvarez was set up for the main event of Bellator 120 on May 17, 2014. However, a week before the fight, it was announced that Alvarez had suffered a concussion and was forced to pull out of the fight.[12] Chandler instead faced Will Brooks for the Interim Lightweight title. He lost the back-and-forth fight via split decision.

With Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez leaving the promotion, Chandler faced Will Brooks in a rematch on November 15, 2014 at Bellator 131 for the vacant Lightweight title.[13] He lost the fight via TKO in the fourth round.

Chandler faced Derek Campos at Bellator 138 on June 19, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri.[14] After a dominant start on the feet, including a knockdown, he won the fight via submission in the first round.

Chandler had a rematch with Dave Rickels on November 6, 2015 at Bellator 145.[15] He won the fight via TKO in the second round.

Lightweight Champion again[edit]

In May 2016, Bellator President Scott Coker announced that Chandler would have a rematch against Patricky Freire at Bellator 157 on June 17, 2016. The bout was for the vacant Bellator Lightweight Championship, which was vacated when champion Will Brooks was released from the promotion.[16] Chandler regained the title after winning via knockout in the first round.

In his first title defense, Chandler faced former World Extreme Cagefighting and UFC champion Benson Henderson in the main event at Bellator 165 on November 19, 2016. He won the back-and-forth bout via split decision.

For his second title defense, Chandler faced Brent Primus at Bellator NYC on June 24, 2017. At 2:22 in the first round, the bout was temporarily halted by the referee to check on Chandler, whose left ankle was visibly injured. The bout was stopped in favor of Primus via TKO, awarding him the Bellator Lightweight Championship.[17]

Post-title reign[edit]

Following the loss to Primus, Chandler remained out of action for the remainder of 2017. He made his return at Bellator 192 on January 20, 2018. on January 20, 2018 against Goiti Yamauchi. [18] He won the fight by unanimous decision.[19]

In a rematch, Chandler was expected to challenge Brent Primus for the Bellator Lightweight Championship at Bellator 197 on April 13, 2018. After Primus pulled out of the fight, citing a knee injury, Chandler was scheduled to fight Brandon Girtz on the same card. He won the fight via submission in the first round.

In late June 2018, reports surfaced that Chandler's contract with Bellator would expire imminently, making him a free agent.[20] After testing free agency, it was announced on August 22, 2018, that Chandler had signed a new, exclusive multi-fight contract with Bellator.[21]

Chandler is expected to headline Bellator 212 in a rematch against Brent Primus on December 14, 2018.[22]

Championships and awards[edit]

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Amateur wrestling[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 18–4 Brandon Girtz Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke) Bellator 197 April 13, 2018 1 4:00 St. Charles, Missouri, United States
Win 17–4 Goiti Yamauchi Decision (unanimous) Bellator 192 January 20, 2018 3 5:00 Inglewood, California, United States
Loss 16–4 Brent Primus TKO (leg injury) Bellator NYC June 24, 2017 1 2:22 New York City, New York, United States Lost the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 16–3 Benson Henderson Decision (split) Bellator 165 November 19, 2016 5 5:00 San Jose, California, United States Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 15–3 Patricky Freire KO (punch) Bellator 157: Dynamite 2 June 24, 2016 1 2:14 St. Louis, Missouri, United States Won the vacant Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 14–3 David Rickels TKO (punches) Bellator 145 November 6, 2015 2 3:05 St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Win 13–3 Derek Campos Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 138 June 19, 2015 1 2:17 St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Loss 12–3 Will Brooks TKO (punches) Bellator 131 November 15, 2014 4 3:48 San Diego, California, United States For the vacant Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Loss 12–2 Will Brooks Decision (split) Bellator 120 May 17, 2014 5 5:00 Southaven, Mississippi, United States For the interim Bellator Lightweight Championship.
Loss 12–1 Eddie Alvarez Decision (split) Bellator 106 November 2, 2013 5 5:00 Long Beach, California, United States Lost the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 12–0 David Rickels KO (punches) Bellator 97 July 31, 2013 1 0:44 Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 11–0 Rick Hawn Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 85 January 17, 2013 2 3:07 Irvine, California, United States Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 10–0 Akihiro Gono TKO (punches) Bellator 67 May 4, 2012 1 0:56 Rama, Ontario, Canada Non-title bout.
Win 9–0 Eddie Alvarez Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 58 November 19, 2011 4 3:06 Hollywood, Florida, United States Won the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Win 8–0 Patricky Freire Decision (unanimous) Bellator 44 May 14, 2011 3 5:00 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States Bellator Lightweight Tournament Final.
Win 7–0 Lloyd Woodard Decision (unanimous) Bellator 40 April 9, 2011 3 5:00 Newkirk, Oklahoma, United States Bellator Lightweight Tournament Semifinal.
Win 6–0 Marcin Held Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke) Bellator 36 March 12, 2011 1 3:56 Shreveport, Louisiana, United States Lightweight debut; Bellator Lightweight Tournament Quarterfinal.
Win 5–0 Chris Page Submission (standing guillotine choke) Bellator 32 October 14, 2010 1 0:57 Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Win 4–0 Scott Stapp TKO (punches) Bellator 31 September 30, 2010 1 1:57 Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States Catchweight (165 lbs) bout.
Win 3–0 Sal Woods Submission (rear-naked choke) Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery May 15, 2010 1 0:59 St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Win 2–0 Richard Bouphanouvong TKO (punches) Strikeforce Challengers: Woodley vs. Bears November 20, 2009 2 2:07 Kansas City, Kansas, United States Catchweight (165 lbs) bout.
Win 1–0 Kyle Swadley TKO (punches) FB - First Blood August 8, 2009 1 3:30 Lake Ozark, Missouri, United States

Personal life[edit]

Michael married a woman named Brie Willett in 2014.

Chandler owns Training Camp, a fitness and MMA gym in Nashville.


  1. ^ a b https://web.archive.org/web/20111121223621/http://mikechandlermma.com/about.htm. Archived from the original on November 21, 2011. Retrieved November 22, 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ a b "Michael Chandler Bio - Official Athletic Site Official Athletic Site - Wrestling". Mutigers.com. Retrieved 2015-07-09.
  3. ^ "Mike Chandler, Jr. (13-3-0) Official Mixed Martial Arts Fighter Profile". Mixedmartialarts.com. Retrieved 2015-07-09.
  4. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20110318233414/http://mmajunkie.com/news/19194/mizzous-next-mma-star-strikeforces-mike-chandler-seeks-to-match-rise-of-tyron-woodley.mma. Archived from the original on March 18, 2011. Retrieved April 24, 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20110317030226/http://mmajunkie.com/news/22385/undefeated-mike-chandler-added-to-bellators-season-four-lightweight-tourney.mma. Archived from the original on March 17, 2011. Retrieved April 24, 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^ "Bellator Lightweight Michael Chandler Looking to Make a Strong Statement by Winning Tournament". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 2015-07-09.
  7. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20111006112816/http://mmajunkie.com/news/25309/eddie-alvarez-injured-bellator-54-title-fight-michael-chandler-delayed.mma. Archived from the original on October 6, 2011. Retrieved October 12, 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "Champ Eddie Alvarez meets Michael Chandler at November's Bellator 58". MMAJunkie.com. 2011-10-13. Archived from the original on 2011-10-14.
  9. ^ "Bellator 67 - Casino Rama, Rama, Ontario - Bellator Fighting Championships". Bellator.com. Archived from the original on 2012-05-02. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
  10. ^ "Dave Jansen off Bellator 96, David Rickels meets Michael Chandler at Bellator 97". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2013-06-02.
  11. ^ "Eddie Alvarez and Bellator mend fences, book Michael Chandler rematch for PPV". mmajunkie.com. Archived from the original on 2013-11-05. Retrieved 2013-08-13.
  12. ^ "Eddie Alvarez suffers concussion, out of Bellator 120". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2014-05-10.
  13. ^ "Tito Ortiz-Stephan Bonnar, Will Brooks-Michael Chandler set for Nov. 15 Bellator". sherdog.com. September 5, 2014.
  14. ^ Staff (March 24, 2015). "Michael Chandler vs. Derek Campos joins Bellator 138, which moves to June 19". mmajunkie.com.
  15. ^ "Bellator 145 Fight Card". bellator.com. 2015-11-06.
  16. ^ "Michael Chandler, Patricky 'Pitbull' to Vie for Vacant Lightweight Title". sherdog.com. May 14, 2016.
  17. ^ Steven Marrocco (June 24, 2017). "Bellator NYC results: Brent Primus wins lightweight title with injury TKO over Michael Chandler". mmajunkie.com.
  18. ^ Jay Anderson (November 18, 2017). "Michael Chandler to face Goiti Yamauchi at Bellator 192". cagesidepress.com.
  19. ^ "Sonnen unanimous over 'Rampage' at Bellator 192". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2018-01-23.
  20. ^ Dan Hiergesell (June 23, 2018). "Report: Michael Chandler's Bellator MMA contract due to expire 'imminently'". mmamania.com.
  21. ^ Brett Okamoto (August 22, 2018). "Sources: Michael Chandler signs exclusive deal with Bellator". espn.com.
  22. ^ John Morgan (October 11, 2018). "Brent Primus vs. Michael Chandler rematch headlines new Bellator 'Salute the Troops' event in Hawaii". mmajunkie.com.
  23. ^ http://mmajunkie.com/2016/06/mmajunkies-knockout-of-the-month-for-june-which-brutal-finish-took-the-cake

External links[edit]