Bisping - Mixed Martial Arts Career - Ultimate Fighting Championship - Move Down To Middleweight

Move Down To Middleweight

Since the start of his MMA career, people had been advising Bisping that he was a little too small for light heavyweight and would do better at middleweight, and after his loss to Evans, Bisping decided to drop down a weight division, with Dana White's support. On 19 April 2008 at UFC 83, Bisping made his middleweight debut against Charles McCarthy who had a rather lackluster record in MMA. Bisping won by TKO, as McCarthy was unable to continue after the first round due to a forearm injury he sustained after receiving an unanswered series of knees and uppercuts from Bisping.

Bisping's next fight at middleweight was scheduled to be on 7 June 2008 at UFC 85 in London, against Chris Leben. However, Jason Day stepped in after Leben was in jail for 35 days and unable to compete. Bisping won the fight in dominant fashion in the first round, securing two takedowns and applying a high paced pressure; it was his second 1st round TKO in a row.

Bisping finally fought Chris Leben in the headliner of UFC 89 on 18 October 2008 Chris Leben. Bisping won a unanimous decision. The judges scored the fight 30–27 (twice), and 29–28 for Bisping. Bisping used effective counter punching in the fight to keep the aggressive Leben at bay. After the fight Leben tested positive for Stanozolol and was suspended for nine months.

After the fight with Leben, Bisping was confirmed as one of the coaches on the ninth season of The Ultimate Fighter. The other coach was American Dan Henderson.

Bisping would fight Henderson after the show's conclusion, at UFC 100 on 11 July 2009 at Mandalay Bay . The fight was believed to be an eliminator for the UFC Middleweight Championship top contender spot. Bisping was knocked out by Henderson with a flush overhand right while he was circling to his left. Henderson followed up with a strike after Bisping had fallen to the ground before the fight was stopped. It marked the first occasion Bisping had ever conceded a knockout loss.

Bisping faced Spirit MC & Pride veteran Denis Kang on 14 November 2009 at UFC 105. Bisping TKO'd Kang in the 2nd round. Kang dropped Bisping with a right hand in the first round which stunned Bisping. Kang followed Bisping to the floor and attempted submissions, but Bisping defended well and neutralised Kang's attacks despite Kang briefly having full mount. In the 2nd round Bisping secured a single-leg takedown and the complexion of the fight changed. He unleashed a ground and pound attack on the Canadian, which Kang failed to recover from. The fight was awarded "Fight of the Night" giving both Kang and Bisping a $40,000 bonus.

Bisping next faced former PRIDE Middleweight Champion Wanderlei Silva on 21 February 2010 at UFC 110. Wanderlei Silva's ability to flurry in the final seconds of the second and third rounds, two knockdowns and an attempted guillotine choke contributed to his victory by a clear unanimous decision (29–28, 29–28, 29–28).

Bisping defeated Dan Miller by unanimous decision on 29 May 2010 at UFC 114.

Bisping faced and defeated Yoshihiro Akiyama on October, 16th 2010 at UFC 120, winning 30–27 on all three judges' scorecards. The fight was awarded Fight of the Night honours. Though Bisping was rocked early in the fight by Akiyama, he regained his composure and landed combos repeatedly on Akiyama to sweep all three judges scorecards.

Bisping faced off in an emotionally charged fight against Jorge Rivera on 26 February 2011 at UFC 127. Both fighters had trash talked each other before the fight, having to be restrained at the weigh-in during a verbal argument. Bisping dominated the first round scoring a few takedowns until he delivered an illegal knee to the head of Rivera. A point was taken from Bisping and, after a lengthy halt to the action, the fight continued. The fight ended with a TKO from Bisping in the second round. After the fight Bisping spat at Rivera's corner and confronted Rivera on pre-fight comments that Bisping thought disparaged his family. Rivera denied the comments and tried to mend things but Bisping told him to "Go home" and called him a "loser." In the aftermath of the incident Bisping faced "disciplinary actions" and was fined. Multiple fighters have since come forward saying they want to fight Bisping in light of the incident including UFC middleweight notables Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, Demian Maia, Alan Belcher, and Nate Marquardt.

On 27 May 2011, it was revealed that Bisping would be one of the coaches of The Ultimate Fighter Season 14, opposite to Jason Miller. There were concerns that Jason Miller had spies in Michael Bisping's training camp, but Bisping was confident that was not true. Bisping defeated Jason Miller via third round TKO on 3 December 2011 at The Ultimate Fighter 14 Finale.

Bisping was expected to face Demian Maia on 28 January 2012 at UFC on Fox 2 However, an injury forced Mark Muñoz out of his bout on the same card with Chael Sonnen and Bisping instead fought Sonnen for a chance to challenge Anderson Silva for the Middleweight title. Sonnen defeated Bisping via unanimous decision.

Bisping was expected to face Tim Boetsch on 21 July 2012 at UFC 149. However, Bisping was forced out of the bout with an injury and replaced by promotional newcomer Hector Lombard.

Bisping faced Brian Stann on 22 September 2012 at UFC 152. Bisping won the fight via unanimous decision.

Bisping faced former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Vitor Belfort on 19 January 2013 at UFC on FX: Belfort vs. Bisping in a fight where if Bisping were to win, he would be given a title shot. However, he lost the fight via second-round TKO after getting hit flush by a head kick.

Bisping is expected to face Alan Belcher on 27 April 2013 at UFC 159.

Read more about this topic:  Bisping, Mixed Martial Arts Career, Ultimate Fighting Championship

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