Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer


Patricio Freire: Michael Chandler’s UFC success reflects how good I am, Bellator’s talent level

Patricio Freire wasn’t disappointed, nor surprised, to see rival Michael Chandler succeed at UFC 257.

The outcome was what the Bellator lightweight and featherweight champion Freire envisioned. Chandler defeated Dan Hooker in emphatic fashion with a first-round knockout.

Freire doesn’t think Chandler’s success will end with just one UFC victory.

“I already predicted that he would start that way,” Freire told MMA Junkie in Portuguese through a translator on Thursday. “I think he beats every one of the top guys in the UFC. He has very powerful hands. His striking is getting better, and he’s a super wrestler for MMA. I believe he can be the champion.”

Despite all of the trash talk and bad feelings, which Freire projected to the world on UFC 257 fight night and beyond, Freire likes that Chandler is winning. If Chandler’s stock rises, so does Freire’s. When the two fought in May 2019, Freire defeated Chandler by TKO in 61 seconds. “Pitbull” plans on never letting Chandler live that down.

“I’ve been saying this in all my interviews recently,” Freire said. “This has been a good thing for me. Even if he doesn’t want it to be this way, the more that he wins, the more that me destroying him will look great. I’ve been pretty vocal about it.

“He spent three years talking after he beat my brother on social media, so I’ll be doing this forever. There are some fans that complain and talk trash to me. Others think that’s fine and they like it. But I don’t really give a damn, I just care about what I have the desire to do, and I’ll keep doing it. … As my official representative in the UFC right now, everything he does well will look good for me.”

For Freire, his comments about Chandler and the UFC aren’t about jealousy or throwing himself into the spotlight. Sure, it’s about rubbing it in Chandler’s face. But furthermore, it’s about telling the world “I told you so. Bellator fighters are as good as any.”

“No one has done to him what I did, and I don’t think anyone ever will,” Freire said. “It’s good for this sport because people talk like Bellator is a second-tier promotion and UFC is the top-tier of the sport. It’s not like that. We are all the same level, but you have differences when you spend all those years saying how we’re the B-league and when getting there we have to prove ourselves.”

“Pitbull” warned Bellator haters that their doubt will backfire. The more an athlete is told he or she can’t do something, the more motivation that’s created to achieve new heights. That’s what Chandler did.

“You have a great fighter who’s now even hungrier and thirstier than he was before, trying to prove to himself that he’s not the can everyone was writing him to be,” Freire said. “It makes not just Chandler, but anyone making the jump from Bellator to the UFC more dangerous than the UFC guys are to us.”

Show CommentsClose Comments

Leave a comment