On the eve of Bellator’s Lightweight Championship fight, current champion Michael Chandler is aware of the tall task before him. Why? Chandler’s opponent is no stranger.
It was almost two years ago when Chandler, then the No. 1 contender, took on then-champion Eddie Alvarez. Chandler and Alvarez proceeded to put on one of the shows of the year, constantly rocking each other with big shots, both fighters near ending the fight on several instances. In the end it was Chandler who was able to land the final blow, getting to Alvarez with strikes and finishing him on the ground via rear naked choke in Round 4.
Since their memorable fight at Bellator 58, both fighters have maintained very different fight schedules. Chandler has scored wins over Akihiro Gono, Rick Hawn and David Rickels, while Alvarez has been inactive since Oct. 12th, 2012, due to a legal battle with Bellator.
Saturday, the two standouts do it all over again, as they enter the cage in the main event of Bellator 106. Chandler joined the SiriusXM Fight Club Thursday, pulling no punches when asked about his game plan against Alvarez.
I love going out there and performing and entertaining and being known as a guy who puts on exciting fights but, I’m also not afraid to say I don’t want a war. I don’t go out there with the intention of having a back-and-forth battle, getting my face all beat up and taking that kind of damage. Can I take it? Yeah, I proved to the world I can take it, and I’m not going to back down from a crazy fight like that, but going into a fight like that my mentality is get in, get out, as quick as possible, and try an prolong my career. When you get a guy like myself and Eddie, who’s a phenomenal competitor, stepping into the cage, it’s not easy to break my will, it’s not easy to break his will, so it’s bound to be a good fight.
Both Alvarez and Chandler will absolutely show up Saturday night focused and ready. And if this fight is even half as good as their last one, we are all in for a treat.