SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 27: Michael Bisping of Great Britain celebrates his victory over Jorge Rivera of the USA in their middleweight bout part of at UFC 127 at Acer Arena on February 27, 2011 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)
Now that the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight division is a bit clearer, thanks to Ben Henderson retaining his title this past weekend (Aug., 11, 2012) at UFC 150 by defeating Frankie Edgar for a second consecutive time, it's time for the middleweight class to sort itself out.
Chris Weidman, Michael Bisping and even Tim Boetsch, thanks to his upset win over Hector Lombard at UFC 149, are making their case to get the next crack at dethroning the 185-pound king, Anderson Silva.
UFC President Dana White seems to be leaning towards Weidman as the number one contender, though there may be one person in particular who may have a difference of opinion with his boss, the aforementioned Michael Bisping.
Lined up to take on Brian Stann in the co-main event at UFC 152 on Sept, 22, 2012 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, "The Count" says if he manages to topple the "All American" in an impressive manner, he should get the next title shot, according to a conversation he had with UFC matchmaker Joe Silva.
MMA Fight Corner has the scoop, after the jump:
"We've had that conversation. But I've got to do that, I've got to perform. I've got to put on a good win against Brian Stann. As I said earlier, going out there and scraping a decision by the skin of my teeth won't cut it. I've got to go out there, I've got to beat him, I'm gonna look good and I've gotta fight. I'm going to put on the performance of my lifetime. Brian Stann ain't no pushover. If I do that, I believe I will get a title shot. Stann's a very dangerous fighter, very popular, he's a big name and this is a big fight. It'll attract a lot of attention and I feel it's a good opponent to put me in title contention. That's what I want. I want the fights that'll grant me a title shot. I think Brian Stann is definitely a name that could do that, as long as I get a good win and I win impressively. Regarding the fight, I'm just going to do what I always do. Train as hard as I can, get in the best shape I can, get as technically sound as I possibly can be and go out there and hopefully kick his ass."
The British banger went on to give his thoughts on Weidman, who is widely considered to be the rightful owner of the number one contender's spot. Bisping, for one, disagrees with that notion because according to him, no one really knows who Chris is and no one wants to pay to see him get beat up by "The Spider."
"I think I'm right up there. The middleweight division is as stacked as it's ever been. Anderson's beat out a lot of the division. I think the only contenders left that he hasn't fought are myself and Chris Weidman. I think Chris Weidman whilst being a fantastic fighter, all the rest of it still needs to generate a little more hype. You know, no one really knows who he is. So, he needs some more big wins. I've been there in the UFC now for six years, fighting the best the UFC's had to offer and I'm still here. I've got a stellar record and I want to fight the champ. Obviously I got to earn that right, and that starts on September 22nd pay-per-view against Brian Stann. I'm training as hard as I ever trained. I've got a fantastic camp going on. Other than that, I'm going to go out there to completely embarrass Brian Stann. I'm going to prove that I'm in a completely different league, beat the crap out of him and take my title shot. I don't think a fight against Chris Weidman would generate the most pay-per-views. Up until recently, no one had a clue who Chris Weidman was. I didn't. The only thing I knew about Chris Weidman was that I was watching his fight prior to my fight with Chael Sonnen backstage in Chicago before I went out and I had to turn it off because I was trying to get geared up for my fight and watching him fight was like watching paint dry. So, I'm not sure who's going to pay 60 dollars to watch him get beat up by Anderson Silva."
The ‘winning impressive' model seems to be a new motivational factor that has produced some very entertaining results.
At UFC on Fox 4, Mauricio Rua, Lyoto Machida, Ryan Bader and Brandon Vera did their best to outdo one another in order to earn a shot at the light heavyweight belt. In the end, Machida's second round knockout of "Darth" proved to be much more impressive than "Shoguns" fourth round KO of "The Truth."
Now, Bisping looks to follow in the footsteps of "The Dragon" and earn his way to a title fight by defeating Stann in an impressive and entertaining manner. Saying it is one thing, doing it, however, is another.
Anyone think "The Count" can finally earn his long-desired title shot and take out Stann in devastating fashion?