Michael Bisping said last month his middleweight title defense against Georges St-Pierre at UFC 217 might be his last fight, but it sounds like he may have changed his mind.
It sounds like Michael Bisping is no longer considering retiring after his fight with Georges St-Pierre. The UFC middleweight champion said last month that his second title defense in November might be his “last ever fight,” explaining that, after a 13 year career, he “can’t do it forever.”
But, that tune may have changed, as at the UFC 217 pre-fight press conference Friday in Toronto, the middleweight champ said he has since changed his mind.
“Nah. Listen, a lot of people were asking me about that,” Bisping said when asked about potentially stepping away from the sport after the St-Pierre fight. “But I love this too much. I love this whole process, getting ready for training camp. Eight weeks ago, I was out of shape. Now I feel like I’m, well, the world champion; I can beat anyone on this planet, especially [St-Pierre]. I love that whole process. So nah, I won’t be retiring.”
Bisping vs. St-Pierre for the 185-pound title will headline UFC 217 at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Nov. 4.
Bisping (30-7) hasn’t fought since his first title defense against Dan Henderson at UFC 204 in October 2016. In one of the biggest upsets in UFC history, the Englishman knocked out Luke Rockhold at UFC 199 in June 2016 to claim the middleweight title.
St-Pierre (25-2), a former UFC welterweight champ and the greatest 170-pound fighter of all time, hasn’t fought since November 2013 when he successfully defended his title for the ninth time against Johny Hendricks. After that controversial victory, the French-Canadian went on a hiatus. St-Pierre has often talked about a comeback since he stepped away from MMA, but a fight hadn’t come to fruition until the Bisping bout.
UFC 217 will also feature two other title fights, with bantamweight champ Cody Garbrandt vs. T.J. Dillashaw and strawweight champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs. Rose Namajunas.