Eight years later, and “The Count” is still looking for that signature win to propel him to a title shot.
Bisping might get it Wednesday night when he faces Tim Kennedy at The Ultimate Fighter Nations Finale, but this is no unusual scenario for him.
A quick look at Bisping’s UFC resume might leave you to believe he is a top contender to the belt. But you can’t judge a book by its cover.
Bisping’s gone 14-5 overall, falling to future hall-of-famers such as Vitor Belfort, Dan Henderson and Rashad Evans, along with Chael Sonnen and Wanderlei Silva.
That’s not a bad group of fighters to have losses against, but when you are competing on the big stage, those are bouts you need to win – or at least a win a couple of, right?
Maybe Bisping’s victories – those 14 previously mentioned ones – are the reason he constantly feels like he is the next contender to the title.
Alan Belcher, Brian Stann, Jason “Mayhem” Miller, Jorge Rivera, Yoshihiro Akiyama, Dan Miller, Denis Kang, Chris Leben, Jason Day, Charles McCarthy, Matt Hamill, Elvis Sinosic, Eric Schafer and the previously mentioned Josh Haynes.
That, right there is the list of victims Bisping has left in his wake while fighting for the UFC.
Do you know how many of those 14 are currently ranked in the UFC’s “official” Top-15?
Zero. Nada. None.
Belcher, Leben and Stann are technically listed among middleweights on the UFC’s site, but Leben and Stann are both retired, and Belcher remains on the sidelines after a loss last year to Bisping.
Heck, even in their prime, would you have considered any of those fighters as “contenders” in the division? Maybe Stann, a former WEC champion, at one point, but that is it.
Can the 35-year-old Bisping ever break through that proverbial glass ceiling and challenge for UFC gold? Maybe, but a victory over Kennedy is only a step closer – not a giant leap – to that position.
By Dana Becker | TwitterTags: Akira Corrasani, Dustin Poirier, kennedy vs bisping, Michael Bisping, mma, MMA NEWS, Poirier vs. Corrasani, Tim Kennedy, tuf nations, Tuf Nations finale, ufc, ufc news