Michael Chandler and Brent Primus exchange charges
Michael Chandler beat Patricky Freire for the Bellator lightweight belt, and defended it successfully vs. Benson Henderson, before losing it to Brent Primus via an unintentionally injured ankle. That was on June 24, 2017. Twice a rematch was planned. In November each fighter said the other had refused to sign, with Primus believing Chandler was considering a move to welterweight, and Chandler believing Primus took time off to welcome the birth of his child. Then there was a signed rematch at Bellator 197 on April 13, 2018; unfortunately, Primus pulled out of the fight with a knee injury.
So since the title loss, Chandler has fought twice, and Primus not at all. However, Primus now claims Chandler is refusing to sign, and Chandler gives some signs of wanting to move on.
“I’ve heard a date and I’ve heard everything, so I’m just waiting on Chandler and that’s the fight I want,” said Primus to Alexander K. Lee for MMA Fighting. “I don’t want to fight anybody else until I fight Chandler and obviously if Chandler really doesn’t want to fight me and he wants to be a little b**** or whatever, then I’ll definitely fight [Patricky] ‘Pitbull’ or whoever is next. I definitely want that Chandler fight."
“He did an interview on The MMA Hour last Monday saying that he hadn’t heard of me, hadn’t heard anything about fighting me anytime soon. It’s like, man, this guy makes up s*** and just lies and it gets old.”
“I think it’s just because I’m only 8-0, I don’t have a big, big name like Eddie Alvarez or some of these other guys. When he fights me and he loses again, it’s going to really set him back and it’s going to put him back in the 155 division, he might have to go up to 170."
“He’s literally delusional,” said Chandler. “The funny thing is I don’t have to say a thing. I sit there in silence and I let the fans rip him to shreds. That’s the beauty of it. I see a comment that he made and it’s been 24 or 48 hours and I’m just getting mention after mention after mention and mind you, I haven’t said one thing to him but it’s hundreds of mentions of people just hopping on ripping the guy to shreds about how he’s a part-time fighter, he’s fought eight times in eight years, he pulled out of the fight, he’s a chump, he’s a paper champ.
“[I] don’t even have to talk trash because the fans who know the sport just rip him to shreds. So I don’t have to say a thing.”
“The paper champ is very untrustworthy when it comes to signing on the dotted line. We’ve never seen medical proof that he was injured and couldn’t fight me April 14. ... He’s a liability in a sport full of professionals. He’s an amateur in a sport full of professionals. He’s a part-time fighter in a sport filled by full-time fighters.”
“It really is unfortunate that he’s held up the division this long but the honest truth is it was a better fight and a bigger fight for me to face Goiti Yamauchi. A surging prospect with 24 wins and 21 or 22 by submission. It was a better fight for me to fight Brandon Gertz, who is actually a fighter who brings the fight to you and he’s a dangerous guy. These are the kinds of fights that get me excited."
“Fighting the paper champ doesn’t get the fans excited, it doesn’t excite anybody. Because he has disqualified himself from being cared about because he’s so absent that nobody cares about him. He won’t have a legacy. He won’t be a has been. He’ll be a never was.”