Bellator Signs Lightweight Prospect Chandler

By Brian Knapp Sep 17, 2010
Bellator Fighting Championships on Friday announced the acquisition of unbeaten lightweight prospect Michael Chandler.

The Xtreme Couture Mixed Martial Arts representative joins a stable at 155 pounds that includes current champion Eddie Alvarez, Season 2 lightweight tournament winner Pat Curran and UFC veteran Roger Huerta.

“Chandler is a great signing for us at 155,” Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney said in a release. “He has unlimited potential in the sport. I’m excited to see him progress as a fighter under the Bellator banner.”

Chandler wrestled collegiately at the University of Missouri, where he teamed with current Strikeforce welterweight contender Tyron Woodley and 2008 Olympian Ben Askren. The 24-year-old spent time at the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, Calif., before he put down roots at Xtreme Couture.

“I started training MMA right out of college,” Chandler said. “I always knew I was going to fight, even two years before I started training seriously.”

A Missouri native, Chandler has opened his professional mixed martial arts career with three consecutive victories, all of them finishes. He last appeared in May, when he submitted Sal Woods with a first-round rear-naked choke at Strikeforce “Heavy Artillery” in St. Louis. Chandler ended it in just 59 seconds.

“I can push the pace harder than anybody at 155,” said Chandler, who will make his promotional debut at Bellator 31 on Sept. 30 in Lake Charles, La. “My strength is my ability to keep up a hard pace and my ability to break people. I think it will be hard for anyone to keep up with me.”
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