McGregor vs. Chandler: The Showdown You Didn’t Ask For But Will Watch Anyway

Oh, it’s that time again—UFC International Fight Week™ is rolling back to Vegas, and guess who’s headlining? Yes, Conor McGregor, the man who can’t seem to stay retired, is stepping back into the Octagon to “settle” a rivalry with Michael Chandler, as if anyone asked for that. UFC® 303 promises a main event where McGregor, a fighter well past his prime, attempts to prove he’s still relevant against Chandler, who’s equally desperate for a win to justify his hype.

In the co-main event, Jamahal Hill, who apparently has nothing better to do, is rushing back to fight Khalil Rountree Jr., a matchup UFC insists is important. Maybe they’re right; maybe someone’s career will get knocked into obscurity.

And as for the tickets? They’re up for grabs starting Friday, April 26. If you’re a UFC Fight Club® member or a newsletter subscriber, you get the privilege of throwing your money at them a bit earlier. It’s not just about the fights, though—UFC X will clutter up the Las Vegas Convention Center with everything from autograph sessions to athlete meet-and-greets. If you fancy that sort of thing, mark your calendar.

Fighters On Parade

Conor McGregor: The notorious one is back again. With a record of 22-6, he’s returning not just to fight but to stir up enough noise to remain visible. He’ll be squaring off against Chandler, hoping to stream another “iconic moment” into his highlight reel.

Michael Chandler: Standing at 23-8, Chandler is the guy forever in the wings, now stepping into the spotlight hoping to turn his career into something resembling McGregor’s. Known for his inability to be boring, he might just deliver something watchable.

Jamahal Hill: The former light heavyweight champ, sporting a 12-2 1NC record, is back at it, probably thinking another knockout will help everyone forget his previous setbacks.

Khalil Rountree Jr.: With a record of 14-5 1NC, Rountree Jr. is the hard-hitting hopeful looking to climb up by knocking down another former champ. Perhaps this fight will push him closer to a title shot, or maybe it’ll just be another entry in his fight history.

Additional bouts on the card include:

First up, we have the No. 3 ranked bantamweight, Mayra Bueno Silva, clashing with No. 7 Macy Chiasson in what’s billed as a make-or-break fight. Silva, hailing from Brazil with a record that screams “average” (10-3-1 1NC), faces Chiasson, who equally boasts an unremarkable record of 10-3. Expect a lot of punching and the inevitable debate about who deserves a title shot that neither will likely get soon.

Then, there’s the featherweight scrap featuring UFC Hall of Famer Cub Swanson. Yes, he’s still fighting, and yes, it’s against Andre Fili, who apparently didn’t have anything better to do. Both fighters have more losses between them than most people have fingers and toes, so it’s bound to be… a fight.

In the middleweight division, Dana White’s Contender Series alumni Joe Pyfer (12-3) tries to prove his contract wasn’t a fluke by taking on Marc-André Barriault, a fighter whose record (16-7 1NC) suggests he’s just as likely to win as he is to lose. Riveting stuff, right?

Don’t forget the women’s strawweight bout between Michelle Waterson-Gomez and Gillian Robertson, ranked No. 14 and No. 15 respectively. They’re so close in the rankings they might as well be fighting their own shadows.

Lastly, for fans of prospects nobody’s heard of, Rei Tsuruya, a flawless yet untested fighter at 9-0, faces Carlos Hernandez, who’s already tasted defeat thrice in 12 outings. It’s a classic matchup of “Who are these guys?” and “Why should we care?”