Yes, Michael Bisping respects Anderson Silva -- the fighter -- for what he's done throughout his legendary mixed martial arts (MMA) career. But then an "arrogant" Anderson went and failed a drug test, which caused "The Count's" respect level for the Brazilian to plummet.
That doesn't discount the fact that Silva is still a dangerous fighter, one that Bisping will finally get to face in the main event of UFC Fight Night 83 on Feb. 27, 2016 in London, England.
And when the cage door locks behind them, Bisping says he will show Silva zero respect and try to end his fighting career once and for all.
"I'm going to utilize a lot of movement, fight my fight and take it to him. A lot of people when they fought Anderson, they were scared of him, beaten mentally before the fight even started. And you can see that in their performances. In the Diaz fight, Diaz wasn't scared of him at all, and you can see it threw Anderson off. It certainly did affect him. You will see the same in this. I'm going to give him the respect he deserves, but I am not going to be shy, I'm not going to cower away from this guy. I am signing on this contract to fight this guy, beat him, knock him out and to end his career. So, I am going to give him zero respect when the cage door shuts. So, yeah, I am going to fight my fight."
Bisping long proclaimed he would never fight anyone who had been popped for performance enhancing drugs; however, when the chance to face Silva presented itself, he made an exception. After all, the opportunity to fight a legend doesn't come around very often.
But will a "motivated" Silva be the one handing out the knockout in London?