Michael Chandler's first UFC appearance was more than impressive, and he could fight for the UFC title in his second appearance within the promotion. He believes that references can provide that for him, but he should also remember another fighter who had impressive references when he came to the promotion.
It’s Alistair Overeem, who in his UFC debut defeated superstar and former champion, Brock Lesnar. It was his long-awaited debut, and when it finally came to his turn, he could hardly do it better. "I definitely had a better debut than Michael Chandler.
All due respect to him and his performance, but those two fights are not comparable. Alistair vs. Brock in 2011 or Chandler vs. Hooker? No, it's impossible to put them in the same context," Overeem said in talking to Damon Martin.
Alistair, on the account of that victory, did not immediately get the opportunity to attack the title but had to wait several years, due to some unexpected defeats he suffered after that fight.
Alistair on his first UFC fight
Alistair said more about his first UFC fight on the UFC's YouTube channel, where he was filmed commenting on his earlier fights, since the time of Pride, and through that fight against Lesnar, held on the penultimate day of 2011.
"I was excited about that fight and about coming to the UFC. I got a cut from the first blow it hit me and blood was going in my eye. By the end of the fight, I only had one eye. When I hit him with my knees, it was something that Brock didn't feel until then, and then I found a kick in the liver."
"Brock was in extreme pain that actually caught you two seconds after the kick and it completely immobilized him," Alistair recalled of his perhaps biggest UFC fight, at least if we will look at all the attention it has received.
After such a UFC debut, Alistair intends to do even the most impressive farewell fight. He has already announced that his plan is to fight for the UFC title, after which he would retire regardless of the outcome. Of course, he visualizes that departure with the champion belt in his possession.
Behind him is a great career and he is certainly one of the greatest UFC fighters. This is evidenced by the fact that at the age of 40 he matches much younger fighters and that he still has the strength and fitness as before.