Michael Chandler is Betting Underdog in UFC Debut Against Dan Hooker

Dan Hooker Michael Chandler UFC

  • Michael Chandler will make his UFC debut against Dan Hooker at UFC 257.
  • Chandler is a three-time Bellator champion who recently signed with the UFC.
  • He is currently listed as the +125 betting underdog against the 6th ranked Hooker.

Michael Chandler’s long-awaited UFC debut will finally take place next month. According to report from stuff.co, the newly-signed UFC fighter will take on no. 6 lightweight Dan Hooker in the co-main event of UFC 257 on January 23, 2021. That event will also be headlined by a lightweight bout between former champion Conor McGregor and former interim champion Dustin Poirier.

UFC’s Newest Lightweight Addition

Chandler was signed by the UFC just prior to Khabib Nurmagomedov’s title defense against Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 at Fight Island. The 34-year old from High Ridge in Missouri was the designated back-up fighter for the Khabib vs Gaethje title fight. He was briefly linked to Tony Ferguson but now will make his debut against one of the rising stars in the division.

Hooker won seven of eight bouts before losing to Dustin Poirier via unanimous decision last June at UFC Vegas 14. Hangman will try to avoid suffering back to back losses for the first time since 2010. He will have to do it by welcoming the UFC’s latest lightweight addition.

According to Irish bet maker Paddy Power, Hooker is a -162 betting favorite against Chandler who came back at +125. That means that to win $100 on Hooker, you must beat $162. Meanwhile, a $100 bet on the former Bellator lightweight king will yield a $125 payout.

Three-time Bellator Lightweight Champion

Chandler is a three-time lightweight champion at Bellator MMA. The 34-year old was also the Bellator Lightweight Tournament Season 4 winner and is a former NCAA Division I All-American wrestler from the University of Missouri. He finished his NCAA career with a 100-40 wrestling record before training in mixed martial arts at Xtreme Couture.

After a two fight stint at Strikeforce, he moved on to Bellator where he won his first nine bouts, winning the Bellator Season 4 Lightweight tournament and later the promotion’s lightweight title. Chandler would lose the belt to Eddie Alvarez at Bellator 106 then he would suffer back to back losses to Will Brooks.

Many though he was done after suffering three straight losses but Chandler would show his resilience by winning the Bellator lightweight title two more times since then. He has not fought since defeating former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson at Bellator 243 last August.

Fight of the Year Contender

Hooker is coming off a loss to Dustin Poirier at UFC Vegas 4. While Hangman suffered his first loss in four bouts, it was a back and forth war which unfortunately went Poirier’s way 48-47, 48-47, and 48-46. That fight not only won Fight of the Night honors but is one of the leading candidates for 2020 Fight of the Year. But Hooker’s resume is more than just that “good” loss.

The 30-year old from Auckland in New Zealand is the UFC’s 6th ranked lightweight. He has a record of 20-9 with 10 knockouts and seven wins via submission. He has lost just twice in his last nine UFC bouts and owns notable wins over Gilbert Burns, Jim Miller, James Vick, Al Iaquinta, and Paul Felder.

Prior to fighting in the UFC, Hooker won the SFC South Pacific Lightweight championship and Australian Fighting Championship lightweight title in the regional scene. He was also the former King of the Ring kickboxing middleweight champion and WKBF X-Rules Welterweight champion.

Sub Categories:
Shane Acedera / Author

Shane grew up watching the Magic & Bird rivalry but ended up rooting for Detroit's Bad Boys team in the 1990s NBA. He loves to tell sports stories and has been writing about sports since high school. When Shane isn't busy jotting down his thoughts, he's just chillin' at home with his wife Rocelle and their two dogs named Horry and Fisher. He recently added a new family member, adopting a handsome retired K-9 named Ranger.