UFC’s Michael Chandler fears two years of inactivity equal a career death sentence

Michael Chandler is gearing up for the monumental clash against Conor McGregor in two months. Throughout his illustrious career, Chandler has confronted challenges head-on, emerging stronger with each trial.

In a recent episode of The Shawn Ryan Show, Chandler talked about his career spanning 15 years as a professional MMA contender. Despite the mounting pressure surrounding his upcoming bout with McGregor, Chandler remains unfazed. He spoke to the former Navy SEAL about what he remembers as one of the worst times in his professional life after his first defeat in the Bellator lightweight title match.

Chandler stated: “I went 688 days without winning a fight. That, for a mixed martial artist, could be a career death sentence. That’s when the doubt continues to compound on itself. So I hired a sports psychologist. I really started realizing I can do all the physical stuff but if I’m not building up the mind, I’m really just making a more dangerous [but] subpar version of the man that I am supposed to be.”

Reflecting on a pivotal moment in his career, Chandler recounted a grueling period where he endured a three-bout losing streak. The losing run Chandler mentioned occurred in 2013 and 2014 when the lightweight champion fell to Eddie Alvarez and Will Brooks in back-to-back bouts.

Chandler began his career with 12-0 but his losing run made him drop to 12-3. But in 2015, he made a comeback with a first-round submission of Derek Campos. The three-bout losing run he had going into the match against McGregor is the longest in his 31-bout career.

Chandler vividly remembers the challenging 688 days without a victory, a period characterized by self-doubt and introspection.

As Chandler prepares to step back into the octagon against McGregor, he finds himself confronting a familiar scenario. Similar to his earlier struggles, he faces a hiatus from competition as he last competed at UFC 281.

Chandler is not presently on a losing streak, having lost via submission to Dustin Poirier in November 2022. However, he did lose his last match. It was against Tony Ferguson at UFC 274.

Chandler is just 2-3 since joining the UFC in 2020, but he has notable knockout victories over Dan Hooker and Ferguson.