ESPN's Ariel Helwani is reporting that Justin Gaethje (no.2) vs. Michael Chandler (no.4) is in the works in the UFC lightweight division.
Helwani was speaking to UFC broadcaster Daniel Cormier on the "DC & Helwani Show" and claimed that the fight is currently being worked on by the UFC. Gaethje (23-2) is looking to bounce back from his submission loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 254 and will face off against a former Bellator fighter in Chandler (22-5). Former Bellator lightweight champion Chandler steamrolled Dan Hooker at UFC 256 in his UFC debut and earned a sensational TKO win.
Last week, fantasy matchmaker @dc_mma laid out three lightweight fights he’d like to see made...— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) March 15, 2021
One has already been booked and @arielhelwani says another is “in the works” -- pic.twitter.com/iE9xYSrV14
No word was given on when the fight was likely to take place but given the timeline, a summer showdown could be likely. One man who has faced both fighters is current ONE Championship contender Eddie Alvarez. Alvarez was a rival of Chandler in Bellator and defeated "Iron" and also lost tp him previously, while he faced off against Gaethje in the UFC and defeated him by KO. "The Underground King" spoke to The Sun's Chisanga Malata and he claimed that Chandler will have his hands full with "The Highlight" should they fight.
I recently spoke to former UFC and Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez about Michael Chandler’s best route to UFC gold.— Chisanga Malata (@Chisanga_Malata) March 15, 2021
He told me a fight with Justin Gaethje is a nightmare match-up for Chandler.