For a time, Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping and long-time middleweight contender Yoel Romero shared one of the most intense rivalries in MMA. That was back when Bisping sat on the middleweight throne, and Romero stood out as the top contender in the division.
While the pair once shared a truly fiery rivalry, that rivalry seems to have fizzled out now that Bisping has retired.
Yesterday afternoon, during the UFC 225 Media Conference Call, Romero was asked how he felt about Bisping’s retirement. Romero kept it short and sweet.
“I pray for him, and his family,” Romero said through his translator. “[I hope] that he has a great life out of the fighting industry, and a prosperous life.”
While Romero and Bisping once had some real beef, they never wound up sharing the cage together. Now that Bisping has retired, it seems they never will.
“I was watching this movie last night and I just thought, it ain’t worth it,” Bisping said on a recent episode of his podcast, Believe You Me. “It ain’t worth it. I mean, what else am I going to do? I’ve won the belt, I’ve had tons of wins, I’ve done everything that I set out to achieve. What’s the point in flogging a dead horse? Not that I’m a dead horse, but what’s the point? I’ve done everything that I set out to achieve, and fortunately now I’ve used my platform to open other doors. You know, you’ve got to know when to walk away. I’m almost 40 years old, the time is now. So, I want to say, first of all, thank you to my wife. Without her, it wouldn’t have happened. That’s a fact. She was incredible every single step of the way. My children. My dad. My dad was amazing. And of course everyone in the U.K. and around the world that supported me.
“So, yeah, there you go. Great career. That’s that. Thank you everybody.”
While Michael Bisping has hung up the gloves, Yoel Romero is still going strong. He will challenge middleweight champion Robert Whittaker for the title at UFC 225, this June 9 in Chicago.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 5/31/2018.