ACL Injury Sidelines Jansen, Chandler Now Defends Title Against Rickels at Bellator 97



Michael Chandler’s second title defense will occur approximately a month later than originally expected, as Dave Jansen has withdrawn from their 155-pound championship bout at Bellator 96 due to an ACL injury.

With Jansen sidelined indefinitely, promotion officials announced on Sunday that Chandler will defend his belt against Season 8 lightweight tournament champion David Rickels at Bellator 97 on July 31 at the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho, N.M. It is the second title bout to be featured on the card: Welterweight ruler Ben Askren will defend his 170-pound crown against Andrey Koreshkov that same evening.

Bellator 96, which takes place at the Winstar World Casino in Thackerville, Okla., on June 19, will now be headlined by a light heavyweight tournament matchup pitting former Strikeforce titlist Muhammed Lawal against UFC veteran Seth Petruzelli.

“It was just sort of a freak injury that happened in grappling, I heard a pop and after visiting the doctor, my fears were confirmed,” Jansen said in a release. “It’s really devastating to me knowing I was so close to getting my shot, but I talked to (Bellator CEO) Bjorn (Rebney) and the Bellator team, and they confirmed I’ll be getting my title shot when I’m healthy and ready to go, so I’m going to recover and train as hard as I ever have, and hopefully when I get back into the cage it’s more rewarding than ever.”

Jansen earned his shot at Chandler by beating Magomed Saadulaev, Ricardo Tirloni and Marcin Held to win the promotion’s Season 7 lightweight bracket. The Sports Lab representative has won six straight fights since exiting the WEC on the heels of back-to-back losses to Kamal Shalorus and Ricardo Lamas.

Rickels, meanwhile, made it as far as the Season 6 semifinals as a welterweight before electing to try his hand at 155 pounds. The move paid off for “The Caveman” as he defeated Lloyd Woodard, Jason Fischer and Saad Awad to win Bellator’s Season 8 lightweight tournament.

“I’m already back in the gym getting ready for the biggest test of my career,” Rickels said. “I was prepared for another few months off with Jansen already in line for his title shot, but when I got the news I was pumped because I got to enjoy myself for a while after the tournament, but now I’m ready to fight for that belt. Chandler is going to bring a huge challenge, but I know I need to focus on my takedown defense, and just push the pace. I’ve got to hurt Mike early, let him know I’m not playing around. I think he fights off of confidence more than anything else, so I’m looking to put a lot of doubt into his head early in this fight. Either way, I just can’t wait until July 31.”

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

  • 17 days ago
  • 3 views

NEW YORK -- Former Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler attended a recent Bellator media day event where he spoke about injuries heading into his Bellator 120 bout with Will Brooks, learnin read news >>

  • 26 days ago
  • 57 views

If the money was the same as MMA, would the former Bellator LW champ go back to wrestling instead of fighting? Plus, his thoughts on Scott Coker running Bellator MMA. read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 117 views

Former Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler had a farewell message for Eddie Alvarez after news broke that the champion had been given an unconditional release from the organization to join read news >>

  • 26 days ago
  • 38 views

Former Bellator MMA lightweight champ has not moved on from feud with Alvarez, but a rematch with Brooks is more important to him. read news >>

  • 29 days ago
  • 31 views

For a guy who’s clearly excelled in the sport, former Bellator MMA lightweight champion Michael Chandler used to spend surprisingly little time following it.Filed under: News, Radio Highlight, UFC read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 0 views

Bellator will make its second trip to Phoenix in September. The promotion, which held its 100th card in the city in 2013, returns a year later with a middleweight title in the main event. Alexander S read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 2 views

Alexander Shlemenko will return to the Bellator cage on Friday, September 26 to defend his Bellator middleweight title against Brandon Halsey. read news >>

  • 5 days ago
  • 2 views

Jack Hermansson has some power, and the Cage Warriors middleweight champion can clearly deliver it from some odd positions. Filed under: Cage Warriors, News read news >>

  • 22 days ago
  • 25 views

Bellator MMA returns to Michigan on Sept. 12 with Bellator 124, headlined by a light heavyweight title fight between champion Emanuel Newton and Joey Beltran. read news >>