Israel Adesanya Urges Michael Chandler to Book New Fight

Former UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya advises Michael Chandler to take another fight while waiting for Conor McGregor to recover from his injury, as their bout is likely to happen eventually.

Former UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya isn’t telling Michael Chandler to forget about Conor McGregor entirely. Instead, he’s suggesting a brief detour.

Chandler was set to face McGregor in the main event of UFC 303 on June 29. However, McGregor suffered an undisclosed injury, putting the fight on hold. While there’s hope it might be rescheduled later this year, nothing is certain.

Adesanya—who’s gearing up to challenge Dricus du Plessis for the middleweight title at UFC 305 on Aug. 17—has some advice. He thinks Chandler should step back into the octagon with a different opponent in the meantime.

“You can have your cake and eat it too,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “I think that fight is going to happen, regardless.”

He believes taking another fight now would benefit Chandler, win or lose. More reps, more experience. “That Conor fight is always going to be there,” he added.

They’ve already faced off as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter. The beef and all that drama? It’s still there.

“So yeah, that already is there. So just take another fight I think. Yeah.”

UFC CEO Dana White has echoed this sentiment. If Chandler wants to compete before McGregor’s ready, White will make it happen.

But Chandler seems determined to wait for McGregor. He’s been all-in since they coached TUF 32 against each other in 2023.

Chandler hasn’t fought since his submission loss to Dustin Poirier at UFC 281 in November 2022.

For McGregor, it’s been even longer. He was set to return after nearly three years out due to a nasty leg injury from his TKO loss to Poirier at UFC 264 in July 2021.

So much anticipation, so many variables. What will Chandler decide?


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