Michael Bisping may be happy to seize the opportunity to fight again a mere three weeks after his recent title loss to Georges St-Pierre, but that doesn't mean he's cutting any slack for Anderson Silva, the man he's replacing in the UFC: Shanghai main event against Kelvin Gastelum.
“Well, he completely destroyed his legacy in my opinion,” Bisping said on a UFC conference call. “A lot of people have a short memory and will just remember his performances. His performances were great, but if you test positive for steroids twice? Once, you can talk your way out of it. Twice? I think the nail’s in the coffin. The guy was a cheat, and it’s a shame. It’s really, really disappointing. I was a huge fan of Anderson Silva. It’s just disappointing, and it’s a black eye to the sport of MMA.”
Bisping was also quick to assure people that he felt more than fine following a back and forth fight with GSP at UFC 217.
"I feel great, that fight was a week ago, I spar three times a week," he said. "The UFC, they sent me to all the doctors, I've had my medicals, I'm physically 100% A-OK, totally fine, it's a walk in the park.
"Obviously last week didn't go my way. Best way to rectify that is to get straight back on the horse so to speak and get back in the win column. Physically I'm 100% fine, totally fine. Mentally of course I'm a little pissed off. I want to rectify that and excorcise my demons. Best way to do that, I'm a professional fighter, I'm going to get back into the ring and fight again."
And while some people don't think the match-up against Gastelum is a great one for Bisping, the UK fighter disagrees.
“I’ve got fond memories of fighting in China in the past,” Bisping said. “I fought Cung Le and beat the piss out of Cung Le out there, who has a lot of similarities [to Gastelum]. He’s a southpaw, he’s a shorter guy, he’s a stockier guy with good, explosive striking and not bad wrestling. It went well, so I’ve got good memories and hopefully it goes well again."
We'll see if Bisping's confidence can carry him through to a victory this time. UFC Fight Night 122 goes down from the Mercedes Benze Arena in Shanghai, China on November 25th.