Former UFC middleweight champ Chris Weidman is less than impressed with Michael Bisping’s title run.
Although Michael Bisping is ranked as the No. 1 middleweight in the world, Chris Weidman doesn’t think ‘The Count’ has done enough to earn that status.
Bisping, a UFC veteran of ten years, captured the 185-pound title when he knocked out heavy favorite Luke Rockhold at UFC 199. Since then, however, the Brit has been bombarded with criticism for not defending his belt against the divisional elite.
Bisping’s first title defense was expected to be against Yoel Romero or ‘Jacare’ Souza, two of the most feared contenders in the middleweight division, but the 38-year-old defended his strap against the No. 14 ranked Dan Henderson in his former home of Manchester, England at UFC 204.
That fight was accepted based on the narrative — Bisping was seeking revenge after being brutally KO’d seven years ago by Henderson at UFC 100 — but the champion will now face former welterweight kingpin Georges St-Pierre in a bizarre middleweight title fight in the Summer.
St-Pierre, who has never fought at 185 lbs., has been absent from the sport for over three years and many think the UFC is making a mockery of the division by booking the Canadian against Bisping.
Weidman, a former middleweight champion, shares this frustration and believes he faced much tougher opponents than Bisping did when he took the throne in 2013.
“Listen, Bisping’s got the golden horseshoe up his ass as champion,” Weidman told Damon Martin of FOX Sports on Tuesday. “This guy, I gave him the opportunity to fight for the belt and he made the most of it. He pulled the punch out and knocked out [Luke] Rockhold and became champion and since then he’s fought the No. 14 ranked guy and then a guy that’s on a three-year long layoff.
“This one he’s going to make some good money on, so God bless him and his family but man, look at the guys I was fighting when I was champion.”
‘All-American’ beat pound-for-pound great and then-champion Anderson Silva in back-to-fights, and then proved himself against the likes of Lyoto Machida and Vitor Belfort.
“I went through the top of the top,” Weidman said. “I went against Anderson Silva twice, who at that point was debatably still in the prime of his career, had never lost [in the UFC]. The fight before me he beat the crap out of Stephan Bonnar. He didn’t look like he was slowing down at all. I beat him twice.
“Then I get Lyoto Machida, who was on a big winning streak and was the light heavyweight champ and everybody thought was going to be the middleweight champ. He looked unbeatable at middleweight. Then Vitor Belfort, who was on a four-fight winning streak, all knockouts. Then I had Rockhold. Then, this is some set up he’s got going on as the belt holder.”
Weidman lost the title to Rockhold at UFC 194, succumbing to heavy ground-and-pound in the fourth round after fighting toe-to-toe with the Californian for the first fifteen minutes.
The Serra-Longo product then suffered a major setback against ‘Soldier of God’, losing via a brutal flying knee KO in the third round. Weidman will look to rebound against the No. 4 ranked Gegard Mousasi, who he will face in the co-main event of UFC 210 on April 8 at the KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York.
Bisping, the first British champion in UFC history, is expected to defend his title against GSP in July, although no official date or venue has been confirmed.