According to a recent report, it’s looking unlikely that Tony Ferguson will be joining the UFC 256 card next month.
Ferguson, who hasn’t fought since his devastating loss to Justin Gaethje earlier this year, wants to put himself back in position for a shot at the UFC Lightweight Championship. In order to do that, however, he needs to remain active – and the fact that he’s been calling for a fight against Michael Chandler before the end of 2020 seems to indicate he’s ready to go.
Alas, despite the excitement surrounding the bout, ESPN’s Ariel Helwani has indicated that it seems unlikely Ferguson vs. Chandler will be joining Yan vs Sterling as the main attractions of UFC 256.
El Cucuy is currently doubtful for December 😕
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) November 16, 2020
“Here’s Tony Ferguson begging to be added [to UFC 256] and I don’t think he’s going to be added… He’s getting no response and I’m told that he’s hitting a brick wall”.
The other half of this equation, Michael Chandler, has yet to fight in the promotion since making his move over from Bellator – but that doesn’t mean he isn’t willing to provide a callout of his own.
“Tony Ferguson or Justin Gaethje would be No. 1 and No. 2 of the guys I want to fight. I think it’s a great introductory fight to the UFC fans of who Michael Chandler is. They’re both great fights, they’re both guys who fight. As you guys have seen who watched my fights, guys who run away, that’s the best way to try to beat me is to try to run away from my pressure. Justin Gaethje and Tony Ferguson are going to meet me in the middle of the Octagon and we’re going to have a blast. So either of those guys sounds like a great fight,” Chandler said.
Chandler’s legacy in the world of mixed martial arts speaks for itself but as is the case with so many fighters in the modern age, many fans aren’t going to get a strong idea of where they’re at in the overall rankings without seeing them fight in the UFC—against somebody like Tony Ferguson. Whether it’s in December or January, though, it feels like we’re going to find out sooner rather than later.