Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler will re-enter the cage on May 4, taking on Akihiro Gono in a non-title affair at Bellator 67.

Promotion officials Wednesday announced the bout, which takes place at Casino Rama in Rama, Ontario, Canada, and airs on MTV2 and Epix. Additionally, a previously reported welterweight scrap between Ryan Ford and Luis Santos has been made official, as “The Real Deal” makes his Bellator debut against the experienced “Sapo.”

Chandler, 25, has yet to taste defeat as a professional. The two-time Strikeforce veteran joined the Bellator ranks in 2010 and won the promotion’s Season 4 lightweight tournament, posting victories over Marcin Held, Lloyd Woodard and Patricky Freire before toppling divisional kingpin Eddie Alvarez to win the strap this past November. Chandler will make the first defense of his crown against the Season 6 lightweight tournament winner, but he must first take care of business against the veteran Gono.

“I’m just excited to get back into the cage,” Chandler said in the official release. “I fought four times in 2011 and I’m ready to get back to work. Gono has beaten some of the best fighters in the sport, and this should be a good test for me.”

A former UFC, Sengoku and Pride Fighting Championships talent, Gono began his career in April of 1994. Now 37 years old, Gono has lost back-to-back fights since posting a three-fight winning streak from 2009 to 2010. The Japanese veteran -- who has faced the likes of Mauricio Rua, Gegard Mousasi and Hector Lombard -- spent 2011 on the shelf but returned to action less than one month ago, falling by unanimous decision to Daisuke Nakamura on Feb. 18.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Bellator 145's Michael Chandler: 'I just know I'm better than Will Brooks'

  • 28 days ago

Bellator executives haven’t come right out and told Michael Chandler what he’s fighting for at Bellator 145 next week, other than a paycheck and a possible win on his resume.Filed under: Bellator, Ne read news >>

Former Bellator Champ Michael Chandler Will Do Whatever it Takes to Get Belt Back

  • 25 days ago

Former Bellator champ Michael Chandler has finally turned things around, and he doesn't plan on stopping before he gets the belt back. read news >>

Bellator 145's David Rickels on Chandler rematch: 'This one's special to my heart'

  • 23 days ago

For David Rickels, his rematch with Michael Chandler is an opportunity to prove how far he’s come.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Bellator 145: Michael Chandler vs. David Rickels full fight video highlights

  • 18 days ago

ST. LOUIS – Former champ Michael Chandler was a massive favorite in his Friday quest to get back to a lightweight title shot, and he came through with flying colors at Bellator 145. Filed under: Bell read news >>

Patricky 'Pitbull' Freire meets Derek Anderson at Bellator 147 in San Jose

  • 8 days ago

Next month’s Bellator 147 card in California has a lightweight rematch added to the main card. Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

New Bellator middleweight champ Rafael Carvalho wants to win GLORY title, too

  • 28 days ago

Newly minted Bellator middleweight champ Rafael Carvalho would like to add kickboxing titleholder to his list of accomplishments.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Bellator 144 winner Goiti Yamauchi calls for winner of champ ‘Pitbull’ vs. Straus 2

  • 29 days ago

Featherweight Goiti Yamauchi picked up his third straight win in the Bellator cage this past Friday at Bellator 144, and now he wants to be rewarded for his efforts.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Lineup set for Bellator 146 with Derek Campos vs. Brandon Girtz rematch, six prelims

  • 26 days ago

The lineup is set for Bellator’s return to Oklahoma next month with the addition of a lightweight rematch, plus six prelims. Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Will Brooks supports Dustin Poirier not fighting at UFC Dublin: I'd do the same thing

  • 26 days ago

Bellator champion Will Brooks is never afraid to speak his mind. And when it comes to Joseph Duffy’s last-minute withdrawal from UFC Fight Night 76 against Brooks’ friend and teammate Dustin Poirier, read news >>

Kimbo Slice to Headline Bellator Event in Houston: Details and Reaction

  • 26 days ago

Kimbo Slice will headline the main event in Bellator MMA’s next tentpole Feb. 19 at Toyota Center in Houston, according to Jeremy Botter of the Houston Chronicle. Slice’s opponent hasn’t been finaliz read news >>