Bellator 97 featured a lightweight championship match between Michael Chandler and David Rickels. Both men have looked sensational as of late and wanted to solidify their status as being the best lightweight under the Bellator banner.
In the first round, Rickels landed some good kicks, but Chandler quickly started to find his rhythm, and it was quickly apparent that he was the faster fighter. Chandler ended up clipping Rickels with a solid right, and then did it again, which sent Rickels out and down to the canvas. The champion finished up with some strikes for good measure, and the ref was forced to step in.
This win was as dominant as they come in fighting, and it seems like Chandler is rapidly improving as a stand-up fighter.
Chandler is now 12-0 in his fighting career and holds notable victories of Eddie Alvarez, Rick Hawn, and now David Rickels. The sky is the limit for this sensational lightweight, and he is only going to get better with time. Sooner or later, people are going to be throwing Chandler’s name in the hat of the greatest lightweight in MMA, especially if he continues on this upward trajectory.
It’s going to be interesting to see how he handles his career, given that he is fighting for the second-best promotion in MMA right now. Sooner or later, he will get the itch to compete with the best of them inside the UFC alongside such greats like Ben Henderson, T.J.Grant, and Anthony Pettis.
But until that time, Bellator gives him a nice platform to develop his skills and make a great living for himself and his family.