|Born||April 24, 1986|
High Ridge, Missouri, U.S.
|Residence||Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.|
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Weight||155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)|
|Division||Welterweight (2010–2011, 2019)|
|Reach||71 in (180 cm)|
|Fighting out of||Boca Raton, Florida, U.S.|
|Wrestling||NCAA Division I Wrestling|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|University||University of Missouri|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Michael Chandler (born April 24, 1986) is an American professional mixed martial artist who currently competes in the lightweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). A professional competitor since 2009, Chandler first gained notoriety when he competed for Bellator MMA where he was in from 2010 to 2020. There, Chandler became a three-time Bellator Lightweight Champion and was the winner of the Bellator Season Four Lightweight Tournament, and held a promotional win-loss record of 18–5. Since arriving to the UFC in 2020, Chandler has challenged for the UFC Lightweight Championship and also knocked out top contender Dan Hooker. He also competed in collegiate wrestling out of the University of Missouri, where he earned NCAA Division I All-American honors. As of January 25, 2021, Chandler is ranked #4 in the UFC Lightweight rankings.
Chandler was born and raised in High Ridge, Missouri, the second of four children to Michael Sr. and Betty Chandler. He is of German and Irish heritage. Chandler was on the honor roll every term in high school, received three letters in football, and finished as the runner–up at the MSHSAA State Championships as a senior in wrestling. He was voted the Most Valuable Wrestler during his senior season and was selected to the All-St. Louis Team.
Upon graduating from Northwest High School in 2004, Chandler enrolled at the University of Missouri without an athletic scholarship, walking onto the school's wrestling squad. While at Missouri, Chandler was a four-time NCAA Division I qualifier, collected 100 career wins, as well as earning fifth place at NCAA's as a senior, earning DI All-American honors. Chandler earned runner–up honors in the 2008 and 2009 Big 12 Championships and was awarded automatic bids to three of the four NCAA Championships he competed in. Chandler compiled a 31–15 record against Big 12 opponents and a 100–40 overall record in his four years as a starter. He majored in personal finance management services with a minor in real estate. He also built a close relationship with two–time Dan Hodge Trophy winner and eventual Bellator MMA World Champion Ben Askren and two–time All–American and eventual UFC Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley.
Immediately after his wrestling career was over, Chandler began training mixed martial arts at Xtreme Couture. He opted out of competing as an amateur and in August 2009, Chandler made his professional MMA debut with a first-round TKO victory over Kyle Swadley.
Chandler made his Strikeforce debut on November 20, 2009 at Strikeforce Challengers: Woodley vs. Bears where he fought Richard Bouphanouvong, He won the bout via technical knockout in the second round.
Chandler made his Bellator debut on September 30, 2010, at Bellator 31, where he defeated Scott Stapp via technical knockout in the first round. The match was contested at a catchweight for Chandler to test himself for the lightweight division, all his previous bouts being in the welterweight division.
In February 2011, it was announced that Chandler would be a part of the Bellator Season Four Lightweight Tournament. In the opening round of the tournament, Chandler faced Marcin Held, at Bellator 36. He won the contest via technical submission after choking Held unconscious with an arm-triangle choke. The win moved Chandler into the semi-finals.
The tournament final took place at Bellator 44 where Chandler faced Patricky Freire. He utilized his wrestling skills, repeatedly taking down Freire and controlling the fight. He defeated Freire via unanimous decision to win $100,000 and a shot at the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.
Chandler was expected to compete against Eddie Alvarez for the Bellator Lightweight World Championship at Bellator 54. However, Alvarez suffered an undisclosed injury forcing the bout to be postponed. The bout was then rescheduled to take place on November 19, 2011 at Bellator 58. Chandler defeated Eddie Alvarez via submission in the fourth round in an instant classic.
In his first fight after winning the title, Chandler faced Akihiro Gono in a non-title superfight at Bellator 67. He won the match via technical knockout at just 56 seconds into the first round.
Chandler made the first defense of his title against Bellator Season Six Lightweight Tournament Winner Rick Hawn, on January 17, 2013 at Bellator 85. He won the bout via submission in the second round.
Chandler was set to make his second defense against Bellator Season Seven Lightweight Tournament Winner Dave Jansen June 19, 2013 at Bellator 96. However, on June 2, it was announced that Jansen had pulled out of the bout due to an injury and faced David Rickels at Bellator 97 instead. He won the bout via knockout in the first round.
A third fight with Alvarez was set up for the main event of Bellator 120 on May 17, 2014. However, a week before the bout, it was announced that Alvarez had suffered a concussion and was forced to pull out of the fight. Chandler instead faced Will Brooks for the interim lightweight title. He lost the back-and-forth bout by split decision.
With Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez leaving the promotion, Chandler faced Will Brooks in a rematch on November 15, 2014 at Bellator 131 for the vacant lightweight title. He lost the bout via technical knockout in the fourth round.
In May 2016, Bellator MMA president Scott Coker announced that Chandler would rematch Patricky Freire on June 17, 2016, at Bellator 157, now for the vacant Bellator Lightweight Championship. He regained the title after knocking Freire out in the first round.
In his first title defense, Chandler faced former UFC Lightweight Champion Benson Henderson on November 19, 2016 in the main event of Bellator 165. He won the back-and-forth bout via split decision.
In his second title defense, Chandler faced Brent Primus on June 24, 2017 at Bellator NYC. In the first round, the bout was temporarily halted by the referee to check on Chandler, whose left ankle was visibly injured. The bout was stopped in favor of Primus via technical knockout, earning him the Bellator Lightweight Championship.
Following the loss to Primus, Chandler remained out of action for the remainder of 2017. He made his return on January 20, 2018 at Bellator 192. on January 20, 2018 against Goiti Yamauchi.  He won the fight by unanimous decision.
In a rematch, Chandler was expected to challenge Brent Primus for the Bellator Lightweight Championship on April 13, 2018 at Bellator 197. After Primus pulled out of the fight due to injury, Chandler faced Brandon Girtz on the same card. He won the fight via technical submission in the first round.
In late June 2018, reports surfaced that Chandler's contract with Bellator would expire imminently, making him a free agent. On August 22, 2018, it was announced that Chandler had re-signed a new, exclusive multi-fight contract with Bellator MMA.
Chandler's anticipated rematch with Brent Primus took place on December 14, 2018, at Bellator 212. Chandler dominated the majority of the fight by out-wrestling Primus, ultimately defeating him by unanimous decision and regaining the Bellator Lightweight World title in the process.
On October 25, 2019, it was announced that Chandler would return to cage to rematch Benson Henderson at Bellator & Rizin: Japan on December 29, 2019. However, Henderson was forced to withdraw from the bout citing an injury and was replaced by Sidney Outlaw in an 160 pounds catchweight bout. He defeated Outlaw via knockout in the first round.
A rematch with Benson Henderson was rescheduled to take place at Bellator 244 on June 6, 2020. However, the event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and eventually took place on August 7, 2020 at Bellator 243. He won the fight via knockout in the first round.
In August 2020 it was reported that Chandler was a free agent following his victory at Bellator 243.
Chandler made his promotional debut against Dan Hooker at UFC 257 on January 24, 2021. He won the fight via technical knockout in the first round. This win earned him the Performance of the Night award.
Chandler faced long–time veteran Charles Oliveira for the vacant UFC Lightweight Championship, following former champion Khabib Nurmagomedov's retirement, while headlining UFC 262 on May 15, 2021. Although he managed to hurt Oliveira in the first, Chandler lost the fight via technical knockout early in the second round.
|Professional record breakdown|
|28 matches||22 wins||6 losses|
|Loss||22–6||Charles Oliveira||TKO (punches)||UFC 262||May 15, 2021||2||0:19||Houston, Texas, United States||For the vacant UFC Lightweight Championship.|
|Win||22–5||Dan Hooker||TKO (punches)||UFC 257||January 24, 2021||1||2:30||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||21–5||Benson Henderson||KO (punches)||Bellator 243||August 7, 2020||1||2:09||Uncasville, Connecticut, United States|
|Win||20–5||Sidney Outlaw||KO (punches)||Bellator 237||December 29, 2019||1||2:59||Saitama, Japan||Catchweight (160 lb) bout.|
|Loss||19–5||Patrício Freire||TKO (punches)||Bellator 221||May 11, 2019||1||1:01||Rosemont, Illinois, United States||Lost the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||19–4||Brent Primus||Decision (unanimous)||Bellator 212||December 14, 2018||5||5:00||Honolulu, Hawaii, United States||Won the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||18–4||Brandon Girtz||Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke)||Bellator 197||April 13, 2018||1||4:00||St. Charles, Missouri, United States|
|Win||17–4||Goiti Yamauchi||Decision (unanimous)||Bellator 192||January 20, 2018||3||5:00||Inglewood, California, United States|
|Loss||16–4||Brent Primus||TKO (doctor stoppage)||Bellator NYC||June 24, 2017||1||2:22||New York City, New York, United States||Lost the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||16–3||Benson Henderson||Decision (split)||Bellator 165||November 19, 2016||5||5:00||San Jose, California, United States||Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||15–3||Patricky Freire||KO (punch)||Bellator 157: Dynamite 2||June 24, 2016||1||2:14||St. Louis, Missouri, United States||Won the vacant Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||14–3||David Rickels||TKO (punches)||Bellator 145||November 6, 2015||2||3:05||St. Louis, Missouri, United States|
|Win||13–3||Derek Campos||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Bellator 138||June 19, 2015||1||2:17||St. Louis, Missouri, United States|
|Loss||12–3||Will Brooks||TKO (punches)||Bellator 131||November 15, 2014||4||3:48||San Diego, California, United States||For the vacant Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Loss||12–2||Will Brooks||Decision (split)||Bellator 120||May 17, 2014||5||5:00||Southaven, Mississippi, United States||For the interim Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Loss||12–1||Eddie Alvarez||Decision (split)||Bellator 106||November 2, 2013||5||5:00||Long Beach, California, United States||Lost the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||12–0||David Rickels||KO (punches)||Bellator 97||July 31, 2013||1||0:44||Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States||Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||11–0||Rick Hawn||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Bellator 85||January 17, 2013||2||3:07||Irvine, California, United States||Defended the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||10–0||Akihiro Gono||TKO (punches)||Bellator 67||May 4, 2012||1||0:56||Rama, Ontario, Canada||Non-title bout.|
|Win||9–0||Eddie Alvarez||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Bellator 58||November 19, 2011||4||3:06||Hollywood, Florida, United States||Won the Bellator Lightweight World Championship.|
|Win||8–0||Patricky Freire||Decision (unanimous)||Bellator 44||May 14, 2011||3||5:00||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States||Won the Bellator Season 4 Lightweight Tournament.|
|Win||7–0||Lloyd Woodard||Decision (unanimous)||Bellator 40||April 9, 2011||3||5:00||Newkirk, Oklahoma, United States||Bellator Season 4 Lightweight Tournament semifinal.|
|Win||6–0||Marcin Held||Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke)||Bellator 36||March 12, 2011||1||3:56||Shreveport, Louisiana, United States||Lightweight debut. Bellator Season 4 Lightweight Tournament quarterfinal.|
|Win||5–0||Chris Page||Submission (standing guillotine choke)||Bellator 32||October 14, 2010||1||0:57||Kansas City, Missouri, United States||Catchweight (165 lb) bout.|
|Win||4–0||Scott Stapp||TKO (punches)||Bellator 31||September 30, 2010||1||1:57||Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States||Catchweight (165 lb) bout.|
|Win||3–0||Sal Woods||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery||May 15, 2010||1||0:59||St. Louis, Missouri, United States|
|Win||2–0||Richard Bouphanouvong||TKO (punches)||Strikeforce Challengers: Woodley vs. Bears||November 20, 2009||2||2:07||Kansas City, Kansas, United States||Catchweight (165 lb) bout.|
|Win||1–0||Kyle Swadley||TKO (punches)||First Blood OFC||August 8, 2009||1||3:30||Lake Ozark, Missouri, United States||Welterweight debut.|
|NCAA Championships Matches|
|2009 NCAA Championships 5th at 157 lbs|
|Win||10–8||Matt Moley||2–1||March 19–21, 2009||2009 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships|
|Loss||9–8||Gregor Gillespie||MD 2–10|
|Win||9–7||Tyler Safratowich||MD 13–5|
|2008 NCAA Championships at 157 lbs|
|Loss||5–6||Brandon Becker||2–8||March 20–22, 2008||2008 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships|
|2007 NCAA Championships at 157 lbs|
|Loss||3–4||Ryan Hluschak||5–10||March 15–17, 2007||2007 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships|
|Win||3–3||Chris Oliver||MD 11–2|
|Loss||1–3||Bubba Jenkins||MD 3–15|
|2006 NCAA Championships at 157 lbs|
|Loss||1–2||Brandon Becker||4–10||March 16–18, 2006||2006 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships|
Presented content of the Wikipedia article was extracted in 2021-06-13 based on https://en.wikipedia.org/?curid=31581084