"I take it as a complement. I've been no stranger to being insulted over the years, so I have very thick skin. These days, when people call me out, I look at it as a complement, because these days when somebody wins a fight, instead of calling out the champion, they call me out. Maybe it's name recognition, or maybe they think I'm an easier fight, but it's all good to me. I'm never going to be short of opponents, because plenty of people want to fight me. To all those people that call me out, I thank you."
-- Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight contender Michael Bisping talks to Stephanie "Crooklyn" Daniels of Bloody Elbow about being the center of attention in the UFC at 185-pounds and consistently have his name brought up by other fighters. In the past few weeks alone, "The Count" has been on the receiving end of call-outs from the likes of his UFC 159 opponent Alan Belcher (read here), Yushin Okami (read here) and Hector Lombard (read here), to name a few. While some fighters may get upset if they were in Bisping's shoes, The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 3 winner says he takes it as a compliment. Instead of getting offended, the British fighter realizes having his name constantly brought up is a good thing for him in the long run, because regardless of it he wins or loses inside the cage, there will always be match ups looming and name fighters who want to try and make a name of the 34-year-old. For that, he thanks you.
Bisping (23-5) takes on Belcher in the co-main event of UFC 159: "Jones vs. Sonnen" in Newark, N.J., on April 27, 2013.