UFC middleweight Michael Bisping has never earned a UFC title shot. He’s come close, to be sure, but has not had an opportunity to compete for UFC gold. That won’t change in February when he faces former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva in the main event at UFC Fight Night 83 in London, England.
Why Bisping hasn’t is a complicated answer, but it is arguable some of it relates to how many opponents he’s faced in key bouts who either had or would eventually test positive for banned substances. More on this in a minute.
As for Silva, he wasn’t always the designated opponent for Bisping. It had been rumored Silva was to rematch Vitor Belfort in Brazil and Bisping was slated to take on Gegard Mousasi. But the Silva-Belfort fight never materialized, so UFC brass decided to push in a different direction. As a consequence, ‘The Count’ knows this is an unusually big fight of the non-titled variety.
“Well, for me, obviously, Anderson is a legend of the sport. He was the long-time middleweight champion,” Bisping told the media on Tuesday’s conference call. “This is a guy I’ve wanted to fight for a long time. Of course, I wanted to fight him when he was the champion, but this really, for me, is the biggest fight outside of a world title fight right now. Anderson is still a massive name. He’s still a huge draw and I have a lot of respect for him as a fighter.
“I always wanted to test myself against him,” he continued. “I knew I could beat him. For me, I’m very, very excited about this fight. When Dana [White] called me and said the opponent had changed from Gegard [Mousasi] to Anderson, I was thrilled. I always wanted to show the world that ….View full article
Source:: mma fighting