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Brent Primus: I’ve fought Michael Chandler 'a thousand times already in my head'

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Brent Primus will walk out for the biggest fight of his life at Madison Square Garden on June 24, and he’s ready to make history.

The undefeated lightweight prospect will take on champion Michael Chandler at the upcoming Bellator 180 show in New York City, and says it feels big already to be part of a pay-per-view card for the first time.

"Something about being on a pay-per-view card is special and I’m glad I’m on the pay-per-view card,” Primus told MMA Fighting. "It's awesome, especially with legends like Chael Sonnen, Wanderlei Silva, Fedor Emelianenko. It's like a dream come true. It's my first pay-per-view card, so I'm soaking it all in. I can't wait.”

Primus stopped five opponents in a row prior to his recent decision wins to claim a shot at the gold, but doesn’t lack confidence going into a fight with the 155-pound champion who has only been finished once in his 19-fight career.

"Every single night I go to bed I've fought Chandler… I've fought him a thousand times already in my head,” Primus said. "Every single time I go to bed I see ways of me finishing him. I really feel I can finish Chandler on the feet.

"Coach Oyama and I are working on really good stuff on the feet,” he continued. "I really think I'm gonna drop him on the feet and finish on the ground. If he wants to wrestle me and try to take me down, I think I can catch him, for sure. I’ve been working with Fabiano Scherner and I can definitely finish Chandler on the ground.

"I drive up every week to go train at Gracie Barra Portland to go train with Fabiano Scherner. The training is awesome, man. Right now I'm in Irvine, Calif., training at Team Oyama, and it’s awesome. It’s unbelievable. I'm going there and stick to the gameplan, and I really think Chandler is gonna have a rough night.”

Chandler has faced skilled grapplers in the past, but Primus doesn’t see anyone like him in the champion’s record.

"I'm not going to say easy, but I can definitely submit the guy,” Primus said. "I don’t think he has fought someone like me. I think the best guy he fought submission-wise was Marcin Held, and me and Marcin are way different. I honestly think I can finish Chandler on the feet or on the ground."

When the lightweight bout was announced, Chandler admitted the was hoping for a super fight or something bigger for Bellator’s New York debut, but Primus doesn’t think that means he’s being overlooked.

"I think that if he's underestimating me, that’s not going to be good,” Primus said. "I think Chandler is a good champion and I think he's gong in there to fight me like he’s fighting the best guys in the world. I'm gonna go there and prove everybody that I belong. I can't wait to go in there and shock the world.”

Primus has only fought once on a Bellator main card before, when he got past Gleristone Santos via split decision at Bellator 153, and sees this bout as a chance to introduce himself to those who never watched him before.

"I have to show what I'm capable of in that cage,” Primus said. "Michael Chandler, a lot of people are underestimating me, and I think thats a good thing. Underestimate me, I'm going there to show what I can do."

Fighting basically once a year since his MMA debut in 2010, Primus hopes to change things after he wins the lightweight championship in June.

"I’d like to be more active,” he said. "Hopefully next year, I’ll get three fights, but I'm training with really good guys, I'm training really hard, so I really don't think that's going to be a factor. I just have to go in there and stay strong. I think I'm gonna shine out there.

"I can see it going five rounds. I really think it can be a bloody fight, and I'm ready for it. I kind of want that, too."

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