Dana White announced last Saturday that Michael Bisping would fight Georges St-Pierre after all. And now, according to Bisping, the title fight has a date attached to it.
One minute the Michael Bisping vs. Georges St-Pierre ship had sailed. The next the middleweight title fight was back on.
Just days before UFC 214, Dana White was adamant St-Pierre’s return fight would come against welterweight champion Tyron Woodley — not middleweight titleholder Bisping — if “The Chosen One” came out on top against Demian Maia last Saturday.
Of course, the Canadian was initially scheduled to fight Bisping, but those plans were scrapped after injuries to both fighters meant the title fight would have to be pushed back to late 2017.
But after UFC 214, White changed his mind yet again and returned to the original plan. White didn’t want to see Woodley fight St-Pierre after putting on an underwhelming performance against Maia, and subsequently announced that St-Pierre would meet Bisping, and not Woodley, after all.
This came as a surprise to “The Count,” who had already given up on fighting St-Pierre, one of the greatest fighters of all time. According to Bisping, White shot down the St-Pierre fight every time it was mentioned; talking to White was like “talking to a brick wall,” Bisping said. So the champ eventually settled with the fact he’d fight interim champ Robert Whittaker next.
“I had mentally moved on, as well. I’d given up campaigning (for the St-Pierre fight). … It plays into this storyline that people have fabricated that I’m a little b-tch and looking for easy fights,” Bisping recently said on his podcast, Believe You Me.
On his way home from doing FOX Sports 1 analyst duties before and after UFC 214, Bisping received a call from White he didn’t expect but was still hoping for. White told the titleholder the St-Pierre fight was back on.
Bisping also revealed the event it’s being targeted for: UFC 217 in New York City. This follows a report from MMAFighting.com’s Ariel Helwani.
“I had given up on the fight, but I was still optimistic there was still a chance of it happening,” he said. “But yeah, lo and behold, it’s looking like Nov. 4 (at) Madison Square Garden.”