Friday, March 9, 2012

Bellator Champ Michael Chandler Excited To Fight, Just Not Excited For Akihiro Gono

Undefeated Bellator lightweight champ Michael Chandler (9-0) has his next fight scheduled for May 4, 2012 in the headliner of Bellator 67 versus Japanese veteran Akihiro Gono (32-17-7) in a non-title “Super Fight”.
Chandler is coming off the biggest win of his career, having stopped Eddie Alvarez for the Bellator strap last November.
The new champ is ready and excited to get back into the cage to show that he is one of the best fighters in the world, he’s just not that excited to face Gono.
Chandler was a guest on “The MMA Show with Mauro Ranallo” (interview with Chandler starts at 7:50) on Thursday to talk about his upcoming fight. Hit play to listen to the full podcast which includes TUF 15 coach Urijah Faber and Canadian welterweight Ryan Ford who makes his Bellator debut at the May 4 event.
“I am a fan of (non-title fights) because of timing,” the undefeated Chandler told The MMA Show. “There’s no way I wanted to sit out for almost a year because I won’t defend my title until this fall or winter. If I was to sit out for that long that’s just too long. I’m 25-years old, I’m young, hungry and improving by the day. I’m a fighter and I want to go out and fight because that’s our job. Our job is to go out there and fight as much as possible and put on a show for all the fans. I’m excited that I’m only going to be laid off for six months now (since the November against Alvarez). It’s still too long, but it’s a lot better than 12.”
“… I’m just excited to fight. I’m not necessarily pumped for Gono, but he’s definitely a veteran of the sport and everyone of the sport who is a true fan, that has been watching since the PRIDE and UFC 1 days, they’ll know who he is,” Chandler said. “He’s had some crazy fights with some of the biggest names in our sport, so it’s going to be cool and I’m excited to go out there and put on a show. No matter who I’m fighting, I only have one goal and that’s to go out there and dominate — that’s all I really can control.”
Chandler has won nine straight, six of which have occurred in the Bellator cage as well as two wins under the Strikeforce banner.
Chandler and Gono are set to meet on May 4, 2012 in Rama, Ontario, Canada at the Casino Rama hotel and casino.