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MMA News Today: Faber Gives Interesting Prediction For McGregor vs. Chandler, Ngannou Claps Back At White, And More

Welcome to MMA News Today, a daily feature running down the most interesting stories in the world of mixed martial arts. For May 22, 2023, we’re taking a look at:

Urijah Faber provides curious forecast for McGregor vs. Chandler.Francis Ngannou responds to Dana White’s controversial statements regarding his PFL signing. Sean O’Malley criticizes “poor management” regarding rumored upcoming bantamweight fight. 

“Conor’s Power Is Just Too Much” – Urijah Faber

UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber recently discussed the upcoming season of The Ultimate Fighter with Jon Anik and the highly anticipated showdown between Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler. 

Faber, who coached opposite McGregor back in 2015, believes that ‘The Notorious’ will best ‘Iron’ in the Octagon. Despite his biggest weaknesses often being highlighted as his cardio and his wrestling, Faber believes the Irishman has improved his fighting flaws over the years enough to outlast ‘Iron’.

‘The California Kid’ also believes Chandler’s often reckless, crowd-pleasing style may come back to bite him against McGregor. This type of issue was one ‘Iron’ infamously struggled with during his classic war with Justin Gaethje back at UFC 268. 

“Traditionally in the past, you know, old school MMA, I would have said the high level wrestler’s always gonna win,” Faber said. “But Conor I feel has closed those gaps a lot. I think Chandler takes a lot of big risks and fights, likes to fight wild and aggressive, and I’ve seen many times where Conor’s power is just too much and his precision’s too much. And I think it’s gonna be, in a five-round fight, leaning towards McGregor.”

“What Is Your Problem With Me?” – Francis Ngannou To Dana White

At the UFC Vegas 73 post-fight presser, UFC President Dana White gave his take on Francis Ngannou’s recent PFL signing. 

Unimpressed, White called into question Ngannou’s work ethic and the profitability of the PFL’s benefits-laden contract for ‘The Predator’.  Not only will Ngannou be able to box on top of his MMA commitments, he also gets a seat with the PFL’s board of directors. a leadership role in the promotion’s African expansion project, and the freedom to seek out his own sponsorship deals. 

“It makes no sense to me. I mean, you’re going to pay a guy not to fight for a year, and it’s already been like 18 months. He’s fought three times, and the last three years, it’s just not what we do here. It’s just not what we do, and the day that we released him, I knew exactly what was going to happen, and Francis wants to take zero risks. Doesn’t want to take any chances,” said White. 

Taking to Twitter, Ngannou picked apart White’s statements and called into question if he perhaps has a more personal issue with ‘The Predator’. 

What is your problem with me?

1. I completed my contract, was a free agent, and chose to walk away. you didn’t release me

2. I hate taking risks? that’s why I defended my title to fulfill my contract with no acl or mcl?

— Francis Ngannou (@francis_ngannou) May 21, 2023

3. The reason I fought three times in three years is because you wanted to control my deal and signs a new one. And freeze me out. “I owe these guys three fights a year.” Isn’t that what you say? What happened? I always asked for & never said no to any fight in the 3 years

— Francis Ngannou (@francis_ngannou) May 21, 2023

I’m finally getting paid and respected, and have a deal that’s fair and equal for all parties. Why are you so against me being free and happy?

— Francis Ngannou (@francis_ngannou) May 21, 2023

You can read more about Ngannou’s response to White here. 

“What Are We Doing Here?” – Sean O’Malley On Cory Sandhagen’s Rumored Next Fight

No.4-ranked UFC bantamweight contender Cory Sandhagen has recently been rumored for an upcoming fight with the No.11-ranked Umar Nurmagomedov. 

According to the No.2-ranked Sean O’Malley, this is grim news for ‘The Sandman’, who would be better off holding out for a clash with the No.1-ranked Merab Dvalishvili. ‘Sugar’ called the quality of Sandhagen’s management team into question, citing the major career risks of fighting a high-level, but considerably lower-ranked, contender like Nurmagomedov. 

“It’s like, who’s managing Cory’s career? What are we doing here?” O’Malley said. “Why Umar? He’s not ranked is he? 15, maybe. Why not wait for Merab? Merab has a way bigger name. Merab’s ranked number one. You can get that fight. You can fight Merab. They’re both very tough fights.

“But, I mean, some people aren’t in the smarts business. They’re in the — they’re just getting told and they’re like, ‘Yes, master.’ You gotta respect it a little bit. He’s going out there like, ‘F*ck it,'” O’Malley continued. “But, yeah, if you have the opportunity to fight Merab, and you definitely can get that fight, you guys are both up there, why go fight Umar? It’s just poor management, I think.”

O’Malley, meanwhile, is expected to challenge UFC Bantamweight Champion Aljamain Sterling for the gold in August. 

Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below. If you want to read more about O’Malley’s take on Sandhagen’s situation, you can do so here. 

Make sure to also read:

Conor McGregor Reveals One Frustration With Filming Of The Ultimate Fighter 31Merab Dvalishvili Can’t Meet Henry Cejudo’s Desired Fight Date, Reveals Possible TimeframeMackenzie Dern Names Catalyst Behind Career-Best Performance Against Angela HillDana White: Aljamain Sterling ‘Can’t Get Out Of His Own Way’ After Hinting At Delaying Sean O’Malley Fight

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