Michael Bisping and Luke Rockhold, both former UFC middleweight champions, went 2-0 across two entertaining grudge matches. In the first fight, Rockhold came out on top via submission. In the second, Bisping won via first-round knockout, winning the middleweight belt in the process.
During an appearance on the UFC Unfiltered podcast to promote his new book Quitters Never Win: My Life in UFC, Bisping divulged that he was actually injured before his first fight with Rockhold.
“The fight with Rockhold, a few days before I flew out to Australia I got head-butted in training and I had stitches in my eye,” Bisping said (via MMA Fighting). “This is all in the book. Obviously, everybody knows I’ve got one bad eye that pretty much, well, I have a fake eye in there now so it doesn’t work. [Laughs]. But my good eye, I had stitches all on the top of the eye and they actually took the stitches out as I got to the arena because they said, ‘Mike you can’t fight with stitches in your eye.’
“So they took the stitches out and at the start of that fight against Rockhold, he headbutts me and opens the cut and I couldn’t see a f*cking thing. It was like somebody taking a tub of paint and pouring it on a wind screen and then you put the windshield wipers on and it will wipe the paint off but it will just smear. So the blood was going into my eye, I would wipe the blood like this, and then I could kind of see for a second, and then the blood would run into my eye again so I would wipe it again and then while I was doing that, boom, I got head kicked,” Bisping added. “I had no idea what f*cking happened because I couldn’t see sh*t. But I couldn’t say that at the time because I still wanted to carry on fighting, you know what I mean? So when I got my opportunity for a rematch, even on two weeks’ notice, of course I f*cking took it because I knew I could beat that guy.”
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This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 1/24/2020.