A fight between Michael Chandler and former UFC interim champion Tony Ferguson has been discussed several times but hasn’t come to fruition.

Ferguson has accused Chandler of avoiding the matchup, but Chandler refutes those claims.

“Tony is an interesting cat. We’re in January so we’re eight or ten weeks removed from the fight (Chandler’s fight against Justin Gaethje at UFC 268 on Nov. 6), ten weeks removed from the fight maybe, or whatever it is. It took me six weeks to recover from the last one to actually stop hobbling around. I heard something last week that he wanted to fight me in February, which was five weeks notice,” Chandler said during an appearance on The MMA Hour.

“Whenever a guy says, ‘hey, I want to fight this guy, but I want more money,’ or ‘I want to fight this guy, but it has to be on this date. I want to fight this guy, but it has to be at this weight’ – Whenever you add these caveats and asterisks, are you really asking for the fight, or are you only doing it on your terms, or in a scenario where you know a guy’s not ready to fight? I’m not ready to fight in February. It’s five weeks away,” Chandler said.

“I would love to fight Tony, but we’ve got to do it on a normal timeframe.”

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A fight with Ferguson makes a lot of sense to Chandler. It’s a fight that he wants, for several reasons, but Chandler isn’t willing to take short-notice fights at this point in his career.

“Tony is Tony, and I respect the guy. Love the way that he fights. Would love to fight him. Would love to share the octagon with him, but it’s got to be on a normal timeframe. Everybody knows what a normal timeframe is. You need eight to ten weeks to train for a fight. I take this sport very seriously. I take these fights very seriously, so no, I’m not going to fight a guy on five-weeks notice,” Chandler said.

“I think a Tony fight checks a lot of the boxes that I’m looking for.”

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