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Michael Bisping’s UFC Career: All the Details

10 months ago By Sports Desk

Michael Bisping is among the most well-known fighters in mixed martial arts, and the former UFC middleweight champion is widely considered one of the most highly accomplished British fighters of all time. This article looks closer at Bisping’s career in the UFC, his first fight, notable opponents, and his impact on the sport. 

Michael Bisping’s UFC Debut

After making his professional MMA debut in April 2004, Michael Bisping fought across multiple promotions and found considerable success in the British MMA circuit. In April 2006, ‘The Count’ was a contestant in the third installment of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) reality show. He went on to win the show’s light heavyweight finals by finishing Josh Haynes via TKO in the second round. 

Bisping made his official UFC debut against Eric Schafer at UFC 66 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in December 2006 in Las Vegas. The light heavyweight contest was slated for the preliminary card and didn’t last too long. ‘The Count’ dominated the fight with his superior stand-up game and secured a statement knockout in just 1:27 mins of the first round. 

Notable Opponents

During his long and illustrious career, Michael Bisping fought numerous notable opponents. Here are some of the most noteworthy fighters he faced:

Georges St-Pierre: Michael Bisping faced Georges St-Pierre at UFC 217 in November 2017 in New York City. As the reigning middleweight champion, Bisping attempted to defend his title against the mercurial Canadian fighter, who had been on a four-year-long hiatus from the sport. 

The fight was an intense back-and-forth battle, with ‘The Count’ displaying his striking skills and aggression. However, ‘Rush’s grappling expertise proved too much for Bisping, and he lost the fight via third-round submission. St-Pierre became the new UFC middleweight champion. 

Luke Rockhold: Michael Bisping faced Luke Rockhold twice in his career. In their first encounter at  UFC Fight Night 55 in November 2014,  Bisping showcased his excellent striking and caught Rockhold clean several times. However, Rockhold managed to capitalize on a brutal head kick in the second round before submitting the Englishman via one-armed guillotine to secure a victory.

In their second meeting at UFC 199 in June 2016, Bisping faced the interim middleweight champion on short notice. Bisping utilized his excellent striking in the first round and secured a first-round KO to become the UFC middleweight champion.

Vitor Belfort: Michael Bisping fought Vitor Belfort at UFC on FX 7 in January 2013. The fight marked a turning point in the Englishman’s life. Belfort caught Bisping with a nasty head kick followed by brutal punches to win the fight via second-round TKO. However, the leg kick hurt Michael Bisping’s right eye causing a detached retina. While Bisping underwent surgery to repair the injury, the damage was done. 

Chael Sonnen: Michael Bisping faced Chael Sonnen at UFC on Fox 2 in January 2012 in a middleweight title eliminator. The fight was highly intensive, and Sonnen displayed his superior wrestling pedigree to control most of the fight. After three rounds of action, Chael Sonnen was awarded the unanimous decision victory. 

Legacy

Michael Bisping has one of the UFC’s most fairytale stories, and the Englishman is a testament to the power of unwavering determination and resilience. From winning The Ultimate Fighter to becoming the middleweight champion, Bisping’s journey has captivated fans and inspired countless aspiring fighters. 

Conclusion  

Michael Bisping began his UFC journey by winning The Ultimate Fighter before making a statement at his official debut. He consistently faced world-class opponents and seamlessly transitioned into a successful career as a commentator, analyst, and podcaster after retiring. His remarkable achievements, combined with his magnetic personality and outspoken nature, have secured his place in the annals of MMA history.

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