John McCarthy names Michael Chandler's ideal next opponent

Former Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler (left) and legendary referee 'Big' John McCarthy (right)
Former Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler (left) and legendary referee 'Big' John McCarthy (right)

John McCarthy believes Michael Chandler should square off against Tony Ferguson next inside the octagon.

Chandler holds a 1-2 win-loss record in the UFC so far and last fought Justin Gaethje in a barnburner at UFC 268 last November. Though he lost the bout via unanimous decision, he was lauded by several people in the MMA world for his part in the consensus Fight of the Year.

Meanwhile, Ferguson is on a three-fight losing streak. In his recent outings, he lost against No.1 contender Gaethje, UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira and No.3-ranked Beneil Dariush.

Speaking on episode 25 of the Weighing Interjection segment of his podcast, McCarthy stressed that Chandler vs. Ferguson has all the makings of becoming a blockbuster encounter.

"I think you should give him the guy they are talking about. Give him Tony Ferguson. Yes, that is a good fight. It should be a fight that we should see. Look at Tony. Yes, he's got three losses in a row. Who did he lose to? Justin Gaethje, Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush... So I want to see him and Chandler," said McCarthy.

Watch John McCarthy in conversation with his co-host Josh Thomson below:

Michael Chandler thinks a win over Dustin Poirier or Conor McGregor will boost his chances of a title shot in 2022

Michael Chandler was the backup for the Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje UFC 254 title fight in October 2020. That was before he even made his debut in the world's premier MMA promotion.

After just one victory over Dan Hooker, he fought for the vacant lightweight belt at UFC 262, losing to Oliveira in the second round. 'El Cucuy' and several others have spoken about 'Iron' being given special "Dana White privilege" in the UFC.

Now, despite back-to-back losses, Chandler said during his appearance on MMA Fighting's Fighter vs. Writer podcast that he's confident of making his way back to the top with a win against either Dustin Poirier or Conor McGregor.

"Poirier was actually one of the guys that we asked for, and he declined at the very beginning... He’s a guy that I admire inside the sport of mixed martial arts. A guy who I would love to compete against... Conor, I’ve spoken my peace about that. I think a fight between me and Conor would be huge," claimed Chandler.

Listen to Michael Chandler in conversation with Damon Martin below:

Watch: Who will win the biggest fight of 2022?

Edited by Harvey Leonard

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