Following his last win in Bellator, Michael Chandler didn’t seem all that interested in a rematch with lightweight champion Brent Primus and now we know why.
Chandler lost the belt to Primus last year after a freak injury left him fighting with only one leg and ultimately the bout was stopped and a new champion was crowned.
Since that time, Chandler says he tried to set up a rematch with Primus numerous times only to have Bellator come back to tell him that the champion wasn’t ready or that he was taking time off to spend with a newborn baby.
The highly anticipated rematch was finally booked for Bellator 197 on Friday night but Primus was forced off the card due to injury and that might be the last time Chandler even attempts to put the fight together.
“Unfortunately, he has a track record that lends itself to not being surprised at all that he pulled out of this fight,” Chandler told MMAWeekly. “As I’ve said time and time again, he’s a part time fighter. Since 2010, he’s literally fought one time per year and he’s been injured. In June, I believe he will have fought one time in two years. It’s a crazy schedule of his bouts. It’s crazy the amount of times he’s stepped into the cage. I was not at all surprised.
“The current paper champion has just been sitting up in Oregon and I have no idea what he’s doing. He’s not doing anything with his title reign. He has not defended the belt. He hasn’t even tried to defend the belt. All he’s done is lie about trying to fight me months ago. Now I’m taking a fight on short notice against a dangerous opponent because I’m a professional fighter. I feed my family with this and this is how I make my living.”
With Primus out, Bellator matched Chandler up against Brandon Girtz, who gladly accepted the opportunity to face the former champion on four weeks notice.
Chandler appreciates that Girtz was willing to face him when he believes the champion never had any intention of putting his belt on the line in a rematch.
“I’m glad Bellator stepped up and found me an opponent. Brandon Girtz was offered the fight. He said yes at the drop of a hat,” Chandler said. “I’ve always respected Brandon Girtz. I’ve always known I was going to lock horns with him and this is why I always wanted to because he stepped up on four weeks notice and he probably didn’t think twice. He’s a real fighter.”
As far as Primus goes, Chandler definitely isn’t wasting any time worrying about booking that fight again any time in the near future.
In fact, Chandler doesn’t see Primus ever actually defending the lightweight title and instead he believes that he’ll ultimately surrender the belt due to inactivity.
“I honestly think if I had to guess and I was a betting man, I would bet my house that he does not ever end up defending the title,” Chandler said about Primus. “That he ends up relinquishing the title and I have to fight someone else for it.”