Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE
Now that Michael Bisping has been sent to the back of the 185-pound line thanks to a head kick by Vitor Belfort, he may have a difficult time finding a top opponent on his road back to the title. Fortunately, he doesn't have to look very far, as the top opponent has already found him.
Sure, it's unusual for a surging prospect like "Costas," who's won five straight in one of the scariest divisions in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), to call out a fighter coming off a knockout loss, but that's just a testament to the star power of "The Count," despite coming up lame in his recent quest to earn a middleweight title shot.
The Serra-Longo brawler tell BJPenn.com he's willing to stand and bang with the British bad boy:
"I know the UFC doesn't usually like matching up someone coming off a loss with somebody coming off of a win. In this case it's a big difference because Bisping is Bisping and he's been around forever. The guy has fought a who's who of MMA, I think it works out well for both of us. He gets to fight in his hometown against somebody who is in the top five or top 10 who has five wins in a row. If he beats me he'll be right in the mix again and if I beat him I'm right up there too. I think it's something for him to think about. The guy is a striker who is willing to strike and I'm willing to strike, it'll make for an exciting fight. If I was him I would take the fight. Being that it would be in his hometown, they wouldn't have to try and sell the fight. The arena would be sold out in no time, all the tickets would be sold immediately. Bisping is a national hero over there and I wouldn't mind beating him in his hometown."
Philippou (12-2) is coming off a second-round shellacking against middleweight "Barbarian" Tim Boetsch at last month's UFC 155 pay-per-view (PPV) in Las Vegas. Bisping (23-5) had his face rearranged by Vitor Belfort at the UFC on FX 7 event earlier this month in Brazil (watch it here) and has pretty much lost all hope of getting a title shot.
Alright Maniacs, we know "The Count" has to start somewhere. Do you think this is the right move for him career-wise? Or should the former Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winner try to get the loser of Hector Lombard vs. Yushin Okami?