Bellator announced on Friday that former lightweight champion Michael Chandler signed a multi-year, multi-fight contract extension with the California-based promotion.
Specifics of the new agreement were not revealed. Chandler is coming off back-to-back triumphs over David Rickels and Derek Campos in 2015. He holds wins over the likes of Marcin Held, David Rickels, Patricky Freire and Eddie Alvarez. His fourth-round rear-naked choke submission win against Alvarez at Bellator 58 awarded him the lightweight crown, and the Missouri native defended it twice before losing to Alvarez in their rematch.
Chandler then suffered back-to-back losses to Will Brooks -- the current titlist at lightweight -- but snapped his misfortunes with a dominant submission win over Campos. He followed it up with a second-round TKO of Rickels and has claimed that he’ll stop at nothing to reclaim his belt.
“I’m ecstatic to continue my career with Scott Coker and Bellator MMA,” Chandler said in a release. “It’s obvious that good things are continuing to happen for this promotion and it’s correlating to big opportunities for myself as well. I can’t wait to get back in action and test myself against some of these new guys coming in and move back up through the ranks. As always, my eyes are on that belt, and it will be back around my waist soon.”
Coker shares in Chandler’s enthusiasm, saying that locking his fighter to such an agreement was a, “no-brainer.”
“Michael Chandler is synonymous with our brand and doubles as an incredibly talented and exciting mixed martial artist,” Coker said. “Not every fighter or free agent aligns with our future plans, but when looking at Chandler’s resume, inking him to a long-term extension was a no-brainer. I look forward to getting him back in action as soon as possible.”
There is no official word on when Chandler will next compete within the Bellator cage.