Two times in Bellator MMA, Michael Chandler and Eddie Alvarez threw hands at one another. And boy did they. They smashed each other up for 4 rounds the first time and then went the distance in the rematch.
And apparently, the likelihood of a trilogy happening is now as dead as a doornail. After Eddie Alvarez evened the score at one fight each at Bellator 106, he left for the UFC. That November 2013 fight was closer than the split decision win was. To say it was paper-thin is putting it mildly.
After arriving in the UFC, he was greeted with another decision, losing unanimously to Donald Cerrone. Michael Chandler, on the other hand, continued to grow as Bellator's face. Always choosing to stay put than test the free-agent waters. Working his way to holding the lightweight title three times.
That's now changing. Chandler is a free agent and is ready to start fielding offers. There's really just two other players. The UFC and ONE Championship. After Eddie Alvarez lost to Dustin Poirier in 2018, there was a growing feeling that he'd re-sign with his old boss Scott Coker and Bellator in hopes to finish the Chandler war.
That wasn't the case at all. Chatri Sityodtong swooped in and gave "The Underground King" an offer he couldn't refuse. So far he's 1-1 there with both fights being 1st round finishes.
While fans and fighters alike have mentally prepared themselves for Michael Chandler to enter the deep UFC lightweight waters, Chatri may yet again have a say in all this. Providing he doesn't re-sign with Bellator.
But recently Alvarez was asked about the trilogy, one that every MMA fan would love to watch, and he said he's just not interested. But doesn't care if Michael Chandler does sign with ONE. Alvarez stated he's only interested in those that hold belts and in one, that Christian Lee.
Frankly, the 22-year-old Singapore native is a bad matchup for the older Eddie Alvarez, as well as Chandler, and most lightweights. Twelve of the 13 wins for "The Warrior" are finishes. And he's only been finished once in 16 fights.
But Chatri would absolutely look to sign that fight as fast as possible if he can pick up the free agent. It would be a huge mistake if he didn't, despite what Eddie Alvarez thinks. Despite the talent pool being best in the UFC, the money will be greater with ONE. There's also the fact that like Bellator, ONE doesn't have to deal with USADA, unlike the UFC. That's if you believe Brent Primus and his allegations that Michael Chandler uses PED.Published 02 Sep 2020, 02:05 IST