Michael Chandler is set for his second walk to the UFC Octagon when he takes on Charles Oliveira at UFC 262. Chandler has had much success in his MMA career to this point, but now as he prepares for his first UFC title shot he feels better than ever. He spoke to MMA Fighting about being able to envision exactly how this fight against Oliveira will play out in Houston, TX in front of the live crowd.
“I walk out into a packed arena in Houston, Texas, 19,000 red, white and blue-blooded Americans chanting my name, rooting for me,” Chandler described. “I go out there and I get in Charles Oliveira’s face immediately and he will realize and feel from the first exchange, from the pressure I put on him, he will immediately start to second guess himself. He will immediately start to overreact. He will immediately start to worry about his legs. I’ll go to his head. I’m going to go to his legs. I’m going to go to his body. I’m going to mix it up. A punch is going to land, he’s going to get his clock cleaned.”
Chandler got to this position by defeating Dan Hooker at UFC 257 back in January. He proved with that first-round TKO win that he belongs in the UFC lightweight division and that he can be the champion. His last three fights between the UFC and Bellator have all been knockouts, so it is no surprise that he is planning the same kind of fate for Oliveira on May 15.
“He’s going to wake up to the bright lights of me standing on top the cage about to get my hand raised and UFC gold around my waist,” Chandler said. “That’s how it’s going to go. I predict it’s going to be in the first round. Then I predict a phenomenal end to 2021 and then we’re going to carry this baby on for a couple of years.”
Chandler is not only envisioning his win on Saturday, but he is looking ahead to reigning atop the division for years to come. That will be a tall task since the UFC 155 pound division is one of the most talented on the roster. Next up for the new champion, whether that be Chandler or Oliveira could be the winner of this summer’s bout between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.
Do you see Michael Chandler finishing Charles Oliveira on Saturday night at UFC 262?