Rockhold had barely cooled off from his recent UFC Fight Night 116 win over David Branch when he directed some words at former welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre, urging him to step away from a UFC 217 title fight with Bisping. It was clear, however, who the real target behind the unconventional request was: middleweight champ Bisping (via Twitter):
Speaking to “UFC Tonight” on Wednesday, Rockhold (16-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) was more explicit in his talks of reclaiming the belt that Bisping (30-7 MMA, 20-7 UFC) took from him in June 2016. That came with some serious shade over Bisping and his title reign – which Rockhold called “the worst in UFC history.”
Later that night, however, “TUF Talk” gave Bisping a brief window to respond. And he gave it a valiant effort.
“It’s a good job that (Rockhold) looks good, because he obviously can’t add up,” Bisping said. “Because 15 months? I fought less than a year ago. He hasn’t fought since I knocked him out in three minutes – yes, three minutes – out cold.
“Then he comes back. He fights – who was it, David Branch? Never heard of him. You should go and rematch Chris Weidman, a couple of bums, try and claw your way back to the top.”
Rockhold is not the first one to criticize Bisping’s reign. While his upset over Rockhold was borderline epic, Bisping has defended the title only once since – in a closely contested match against now-retired Dan Henderson. With higher-ranked men like Yoel Romero and Ronaldo Souza on the brink of their own title stabs at the time, Bisping caught heat for failing to take on the division’s true top contenders.
Choosing to make his second title defense against St-Pierre (25-2 MMA, 19-2 UFC) – a welterweight, who, despite his legendary status, is returning from retirement at UFC 217 – didn’t exactly help his case in that sense.
Bisping, on his end, is right in pointing out that Rockhold hadn’t fought in 15 months before Saturday’s second-round knockout. But, while Branch might not yet be a household UFC name, he was a former two-division WSOF champion who hadn’t lost in 11 fights and five years before meeting Rockhold.
While it’s clear that Rockhold is aiming for the undisputed champ next, he did open himself up to other possibilities. One would be the division’s interim titleholder, Robert Whittaker, whom Rockhold dubbed “the real champion” based on the competition he beat.
Whittaker (19-4 MMA, 10-2 UFC), however, is currently sidelined by injuries. Another option that Rockhold singled out was Romero (12-2 MMA, 8-1 UFC) – who, before losing the UFC 213 five-round bout that earned Whittaker the interim belt in July, was on a remarkable eight-fight tear.
As for Bisping, the future after the Nov. 4 pay-per-view headliner with St-Pierre at Madison Square Garden in New York City remains murky. While he has indicated that fight could be his last, he also mentioned his desire to have his final UFC outing in Manchester – perhaps a title unifier.view original article >>
Former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva issued his first comments since being flagged for a potential UFC Anti-Doping Policy violation. Silva was slated to meet Kelvin Gastelum on Nov. 25 in read news >>
A couple weeks back, Kelvin Gastelum was sick to his stomach over what might happen to his third UFC main event with his opponent out.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos read news >>
A brutal knockout hasn’t changed former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping’s plans for retirement.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>
UFC President Dana White gets agitated at the mere thought of Georges St-Pierre trying to get out of the deal he agreed to.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>
UFC middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre has confirmed the disease that will keep him on the sidelines for the time being.Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured Videos, News, UFC read news >>
Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping’s bench time is doubled in the wake of his second stoppage loss.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
From all indications, UFC middleweight champ Georges St-Pierre won’t be sticking around the weight class from too much longer.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
Scott Holtzman had to deal with a couple odd standups from the referee, but cruised to a unanimous decision over Darrel Horcher.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>
After a UFC middleweight title reign that was outlasted by a Kim Kardashian marriage, Georges St-Pierre has abdicated the throne. Is it all part of a master plan, or just circumstances that worked ou read news >>
UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker and challenger Luke Rockhold squared off for the first time on Tuesday in Australia. read news >>