UFC middleweight Michael Bisping has stepped into the cage 26 times in his career and only been finished once. However, he rarely gets credit for his overall skillset or durability.
The 33-year old Brit hopes to change that perception on September 22 when he faces Brian Stann at UFC 152, a striker by trade with a reputation for throwing bombs in the Octagon. Bisping recently offered up his thoughts on the match-up where he made it clear he plans to make a statement come showtime later this month.
“Stann has said he ‘wants to test my chin’. A nice line from Captain Cliché there but, you know what, of course he does. He’s a big puncher and his only chance of winning this is landing some bombs and knocking me out,” wrote Bisping in a blog for Yahoo Sports.
“But I’m going to test his chin, too, and I’m a lot faster and more accurate than he is,” he continued. “To be honest, I have a boatload more strikes available to me and I think Stann’s chin is a lot more suspect than mine. Getting beat by Dan Henderson, who’s knocked out some of the best fighters in the world from welterweight to heavyweight, isn’t that disgraceful – especially when you consider Stann was stopped by Steve Cantwell.”
Though Bisping feels he stacks up well against Stann he’s not entering their bout in an overconfident manner considering the stakes involved.
“I’m not underestimating this guy – he’s one of the best fighters in the division, and I know he’s going to look to knock my head off with every shot,” admitted Bisping before again turning to his own credentials in comparison to Stann’s. “But I think I’m half a step-up in all the key skills: striking, submissions and wrestling. This is my fight to lose – he can’t win the fight unless I make a mistake and give him a chance to. And being so close to a title shot, I’m not going to make mistakes. I’m taking this guy out.”
Bisping had won four fights in a row before suffering a decision loss to Chael Sonnen in January, while Stann scored a knockout of Alessio Sakara earlier this year to bounce back from a submission loss in his previous pairing. Both men have been rumored to be among the names the UFC is considering for top contendership in the division.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC