Michael Chandler believes Conor McGregor will stain his legacy if they don’t fight.
Earlier this year, Chandler and McGregor were announced as the coaches for The Ultimate Fighter Season 31. The UFC superstars are expected to fight once the reality show airs, similar to most TUF seasons, but a significant problem is standing in the way.
McGregor exited the USADA testing pool after losing against Dustin Poirier, and he hasn’t been approved to fight again. As a result, there have been concerns about whether the highly-anticipated matchup will materialize. During an interview with Brett Okamoto of ESPN, Chandler had this to say about his fight against ‘The Notorious’ potentially falling through:
“I think he’s coming back. It sure would be a huge stain on his legacy, leading everybody down a road, making people think he’s coming back, and then kind of chickening out at the very end and only doing it for the publicity. That, to me, screams insecurity, and he’s trying to stay relevant rather than seeing through your commitment.”
Chandler continued by saying:
“I could be very wrong about it, and if I am, I’d be surprised and, quite frankly, disappointed, but also, I’m not gonna sit here blowing up my manager, blowing up Dana [White] and Hunter [Campbell], just calling them all the time.”
Michael Chandler doesn’t mind if Conor McGregor only has to pass two drug tests for USADA
Every fighter must pass six months of random drug testing before being approved by USADA. Once Conor McGregor returned from injury, he revealed his hopes of receiving an exemption from the drug-testing agency, allowing him to need only two clean tests.
During the same interview with Brett Okamoto, Michael Chandler had this to say about McGregor potentially getting the exemption:
“I could see it very well being just two clean tests. I have no problem with it being two clean tests. I could care less. If you do two clean tests, sounds to me like you’re clean… I’m ready for him to be cleared or at least get that answer [for when he will be cleared]. At this point, we don’t have an answer.”
McGregor last fought in July 2021, losing against Dustin Poirier for the second time. The fight at UFC 264 ended abruptly when ‘The Notorious’ suffered a severe leg injury, which led to a lengthy recovery. Meanwhile, Chandler is coming off a loss against Poirier in November 2022. Only time will tell if the UFC superstars meet in the Octagon by the end of the year.