Michael Chandler Focuses On Process for Showdown With McGregor

Michael Chandler wearing a suit by Musika | Watch by Panerai Luminor Marina

As the combat sports world eagerly awaits the blockbuster showdown between Michael Chandler and Conor McGregor on June 29th, 2024, in Las Vegas, Chandler is well under way in his preparations. Chandler has already commenced his intense 12-week training camp, temporarily relocating from his family home in Nashville to Florida.

The 37-year-old lightweight contender is sticking to his tried-and-tested formula that has brought him success throughout his admirable career. Chandler’s regimen involves a grueling schedule of double training sessions six days a week, with only Sundays reserved for recovery and regeneration through practices like foam rolling, massage therapy, and chiropractic adjustments.

Despite McGregor’s attempts to lure Chandler into a catchweight bout at 185 pounds, the Missouri native remains unfazed and committed to competing at his natural lightweight limit of 155 pounds. Chandler sees no need to bulk up or make drastic changes to his frame, confident in his ability to match McGregor’s perceived strength advantage. “I don’t intend to put on any extra weight,” Chandler stated.

“McGregor isn’t actually stronger than me, and I plan to fight at my best weight class.”

While his nutrition will be dialed in, with a focus on high-protein and carb-rich foods, Chandler’s training will be comprehensive, covering all aspects of mixed martial arts, including striking, grappling, wrestling, and strength and conditioning. His coach, Jeff Bristol, will continue to emphasize explosive power exercises.

As the fight draws nearer, Chandler will transition to lighter sparring sessions to avoid excessive damage, but his mental preparation will remain unwavering. He dismisses McGregor’s attempts at mind games, believing the “mystique” around the Irishman has been shattered, and plans to be the more mentally tough fighter when the bell rings in Las Vegas.

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With his trademark discipline and determination, Michael Chandler is leaving no stone unturned, meticulously preparing for the biggest fight of his career against the enigmatic Conor McGregor. Unlike his counterpart in this fight, Chandler seems to possess a distinct lack of controversy, arrogance, and histrionics. The calm and disciplined preparations affirm Chandler’s life outside of the octagon.

From modest beginnings in the small town of High Ridge, Missouri, to becoming a force to be reckoned with in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), Chandler’s journey includes a narrative of purposeful decisions, resilience, and an unwillingness to settle for what others thought he should be.

High Ridge, as Chandler describes it, was “bigger than a one-horse town, but not exactly a thriving metropolis.” In a place where big dreams were often discouraged, Chandler and his parents dared to dream bigger. “I’m a small guy, from a small town, who was taught to do small things,” he recalls, but his parents’ unwavering support allowed him to defy those limitations.

Chandler’s path to MMA greatness can be traced back to his collegiate wrestling days. Despite being a talented high school wrestler, he received no scholarship offers from Division 1 programs. Undeterred, Chandler turned down offers from Division 2 and NAIA schools, determined to walk on at the University of Missouri, where he knew he would be better served by the quality of coaching and competition.

With the support of his parents, Mike and Betty, who were willing to make sacrifices to ensure their son had every opportunity, Chandler not only made the team but went on to become a three-time NCAA All-American. “We didn’t have a lot of things, but we weren’t missing anything,” Chandler reflects on his childhood, crediting his parents’ unwavering support and his coach’s guidance in shaping him into a well-rounded individual.

Chandler made his mark in the MMA landscape with Bellator MMA, quickly emerging as one of its brightest stars. In 2011, his breakthrough moment came when he captured the Bellator Lightweight Championship in a riveting clash, submitting Eddie Alvarez. This victory not only showcased his skill set but also set the stage for a series of epic battles that would cement his legacy as a Bellator legend.

Chandler successfully defended the Lightweight title two more times, cementing his place in MMA history with unforgettable moments like the trilogy with Eddie Alvarez, including their epic encounter at Bellator 106, where he thrived under pressure.

In 2020, Michael Chandler took his talents to the biggest stage in MMA – the UFC. His debut against Dan Hooker at UFC 257 was a statement of dominance, as he brought his explosive striking to bear, securing a first-round knockout in just 2 minutes and 30 seconds. The victory catapulted him into the upper echelons of the lightweight division and left fans and fellow fighters in awe.

Chandler’s fighting style is a masterful blend of technical proficiency and raw power that overwhelms opponents with a multifaceted attack. His powerful striking, formidable takedowns, and relentless pace dismantle opponents both standing and, on the mat, while his ability to adapt his offense and defense to different scenarios makes him a formidable force in the lightweight division.

Michael Chandler’s impact transcends the boundaries of the octagon. A devoted family man and an outspoken Christian, he uses his faith as a lodestar to uplift and inspire others. Driven by an unstoppable entrepreneurial spirit, Chandler is involved in no less than four health and fitness brands, including Kram Nutrition, WalkOn Fitness, Training Camp Cut, and Speede Fitness.

Chandler’s prolific business acumen is fueled by what he refers to as being “blissfully dissatisfied” – a mindset that allows him to appreciate his accomplishments while simultaneously striving for more. He encourages others to take occasional hiatuses from their physical progression to reflect on their achievements, and what better way to do so than with a high-quality tequila?

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Chandler’s partnership with Hiatus Tequila was born out of his affinity for the spirit and his deep respect for the company’s owner, Kristopher DeSoto. “Kristopher DeSoto and I are seeking to redefine what a celebrity partnership should look like in the spirit industry,” Chandler says. “I have invested in Hiatus because of their commitment to crafting tequila the traditional way – with a deep respect for culture, hard work, and dedication to authenticity and quality at a superior price point.”

Amidst his busy schedule, Chandler finds time for his family and friends. He, his wife Brie, and their two sons, Hap and Ace, enjoy traveling to far-flung destinations like Iceland, Greece, and the desert oasis of Scottsdale, Arizona, where Chandler indulges in his love for golf. The impossible search for perfection in the sport strikes a chord with him, as the need for continuous improvement and dedication resonates with his own journey.

In the entropy that is MMA, Michael Chandler stands out as a symbol of resilience, skill, and unwavering determination. From collegiate wrestling mats to the unforgiving spotlight of the UFC, Chandler’s journey is a testament to the power of passion and perseverance.

The next chapter in Chandler’s storied career promises to be just as thrilling as the last, ensuring that his name will continue to echo through the annals of MMA history. Whether he’s chasing titles, new business opportunities, or creating unforgettable experiences for his family, one thing is certain – Michael Chandler’s journey is far from over, and his indomitable spirit will continue to inspire and captivate audiences worldwide.

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