Michael Bisping and Tim Kennedy don’t care for each other.
The two middleweights will get a chance to settle their differences in the Octagon when they meet April 16 at “The Ultimate Fighter Nations” finale. Ahead of the bout, Bisping joined the Sherdog Radio Network’s “It’s Time” show with Bruce Buffer to discuss his opponent and more.
On Tim Kennedy: “I’ve never met the guy and I have no problem with him. He could be the nicest guy in the world. As I’ve said, I’ve never even laid eyes on the guy. I’ve never even seen him, never met him. The problem all starts from him just attacking me, just attacking me on Twitter and things like that and calling me out, which is fine. We’re in the same weight class, so he’s entitled to call me out, but he got very personal over the year and he continues to do it. So obviously, based on those facts, he’s not going to be at the top of my Christmas card list. There’s no love lost between us. I wouldn’t say there’s a feud. He’s created some bad blood and there’s a score to settle on the fight next Wednesday. I look forward to doing that, and then once I’ve done that and I’ve beat him, I never want to be put in the same sentence as Tim Kennedy ever again. I don’t know him. We have no history. He’s created this. I’m going to beat him and then I’m going to move on to the next thing.”
On Kennedy’s military service: “He should be looked upon as a national hero. He served his country and he served it very well in the military. Good for him. I respect that. He’s tried to put a twist on it, by the way, that I’ve been knocking his military background -- far from it. I come from a military background myself. I was born on an army base. My father and all my brothers, they served in the military, so that whole notion is ridiculous.”
On support from American fans: “You know what? There’s quite a lot of people, quite a lot of Americans on Twitter that are saying they want me to knock him out and shut him up because he’s getting a little bit embarrassing. I mean, he’s doing all these videos -- it just stinks of bad taste. He’s kind of acting like an idiot and he’s letting himself down a little bit. Listen, I understand he wants to generate hype in a fight, and good for him, but the way he’s going about it, it’s all wrong. He’s just such a wannabe, and unfortunately it’s a little cringe worthy at times.”
On how the fight could play out: “All fights start on the feet, so of course he’s going to have to use his striking to try to close the distance and take me down. I think ultimately his game plan will be to take me down and try to control me on the ground. But as I said, all fights start on the feet. He won his last fight by knockout … so therefore he’s going to be feeling pretty confident in his standup ability. I think the facts of the matter are, though, if you look at it, I’m taller. I have a longer reach and I have better technical kickboxing. The fact that I have the longer reach, it’s going to cause problems for him all night.”
Listen to the full interview (beginning at 16:16).