UFC lightweight contender Michael Chandler has offered a resolute denial of the allegations that he bent the rules in his contest with Dustin Poirier.
Even though Chandler and Poirier won FOTN bonus, the bout is still talked about thanks to a review of all the scathing video evidence.
While either competitor had his moments, Chandler’s striking success was perhaps overshadowed with his ‘dirty’ antics.
Chandler has been accused of several fouls. First there was the fish hooking – which is a certified foul and one of the rare moves that you can’t do in MMA.
Chandler is now attempting to clear his name. In an interview for the Bussin’ With The Boys, Chandler addressed each separate foul.
“All three of those things you brought up are a bit unfair for the armchair quarterback to say… The blood thing, first of all, that’s not dirty or illegal. And second of all, he had me in a triangle, my head was over his face, and my nose was gushing blood.”
“Was I trying to clear my nose, trying to breath, and trying to survive? Yeah. So if blood was gonna get on his face, sorry, my bad. It’s kind of like, ‘Well, hey, if you’re content to lay there and you’re content to try to get this submission… buying time, you’re gonna get rained on.’”
“It was just gushing and all coagulating inside there. And also, I’m trying to breath at the same time.”
Then, Chandler sought to refute allegations that he purposefully used ground-and-pound to strike Poirier to the back of the head.
“The back of the head thing, did one or two of those punches catch his head? Yes, after he turned his head, but I was catching his ear with every single one of them.”
“That’s why the referee was there watching the entire time. He said, ‘Watch the back of the head.’ As soon as he did, I said, ‘I caught the back of his ear.’ After that, was there anymore punches to the back of the head? No.”
“All of them were clean, except for maybe one or two when he turned his head… We’re told if a guy turns his head in order for you to punch him in the back of the head, you get those one or two shots because you didn’t do it intentionally,” Chandler added.
One of the suspected fishhooks on the ground was the subject of the most severe charges.
“The fishhook thing, it was not a fishhook. A fishhook is on the lip and on the skin. It was actually on his mouthpiece, which I actually thought was his chin.”
“I reached down and grabbed there because I was gonna pull the chin up. I was training it a ton that week — reach down, grab the chin, lift the head, and go for it.
“I thought I had his chin, but turns out, I was in his mouth and didn’t realize until he bit down on my hand, and I was like, ‘Oh shoot, okay.’ … People can watch it and watch stuff in slow-mo and go, ‘I can’t believe he did that!’ When you’re on the line or you’re making a tackle, you don’t know where your hands were, where your feet were, what you’re grabbing; you’re in the moment, the motion, literal hand-to-hand combat.”
This is a shade of what Chandler previously said at the UFC 281 press conference.
“Told him this is my house. That’s what I told him. I said, this is my house. You know, that’s it. And I told him he’s a dirty motherf***er, too, for putting his finger, for putting his fingers in my mouth and blowing his nose. And, you know.” – Poirier said right after the attempt.
Chandler’s response at the presser was the following:
“I will admit, yes, his mouth was open and my hand went inside of there. It was on his mouthpiece. He bit down. I was trying to pull it out. He didn’t.”
“It wasn’t as though I was trying to pull it out and he was biting it and I couldn’t get it out. It was more just the angle. I mean, you’re getting pushed up against the cage. I mean, it’s just and then there was I mean, I think that was all.”
Now Poirier shared more detail during his appearance on the MMA Hour:
“Yeah. It doesn’t hurt, but the leverage you get on that grip. You know he had his fingers on my top teeth where my mouth guard is. So he tried to get my neck up to lock in a choke. The leverage you get from gripping that is hard for me to keep my chin down… I bit the s**t out of his finger. I had my mouth guard in, so only my bottom teeth could get him. ”
When asked whether he wanted to face Dariush, Dustin Poirier responded as follows when chatting with Ariel Helwani:
“Not really, honestly. No disrespect to Beneil. He’s a great fighter, and you know, he did it the right way. He’s a respectful guy, a hard worker. He goes in there and handles business, I respect that, and I’ll watch when he fights. When we just talked about the other names that I fought recently, that one’s not like super exciting when I think about it.”
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