Recently retired Ultimate Fighting Championship middleweight champion Michael Bisping can look back on a career full of accomplishments, but he is happy to name one that he finds especially gratifying.
“The Count” was a recent guest on “The Joe Rogan Experience MMA Show” and was asked by the UFC color commentator to pick the most satisfying win of his career.
“Other than winning the belt, and winning The Ultimate Fighter, I’m sure, what was your most satisfying victory? Was it Cung Le?” Rogan asked.
Bisping thought for a moment before responding. “My most satisfying victory… My word,” Bisping said. “Anderson Silva. That was a big one for me.”
Rogan agreed that claiming Bisping's 2016 win over “The Spider” was probably his best victory to that point, before turning the conversation to the controversial knee Silva landed in the third round when Bisping attempted to retrieve his mouthpiece.
“It was cheap, I’m glad you said that,” Bisping responded.
“It was cheap -- I mean I’m a giant Anderson Silva fan,” Rogan said. “You don’t get a bigger Anderson Silva fan than me, but you didn’t have your mouthpiece, you were pointing to the mouthpiece, you were separated, and you took a pause because you thought the referee was going to separate you and give you back your mouthpiece, and Anderson came in with a knee.”
Bisping claimed he had been waiting for an opportune moment to get his mouthguard back, as is typical in MMA.
“Well I know the rules,” Bisping said. “I know there has to be a lull in the action for the referee to step in. I’m backing up, and we’re not engaging in blows, to me that’s a lull in the action. So I take that moment to point down over here and say ‘my mouth piece’ and as I’m doing that, he throws a beautiful knee -- it was beautiful, it really was -- and good for him. I don’t hold it against the guy.”
“Of course, beating Rockhold and winning the belt, nothing tops that, but the Anderson one, because of that [knee] it just made the storyline so much better,” Bisping continued. “To fight through that adversity, to dig deep.
“I dropped him in the first round, dropped him in the second, I was winning, then that happened,” Bisping added. “It felt good.”
Bisping claimed he received criticism after the fight with Silva from fans claiming he didn’t beat the Brazilian in the prime of his career. The Englishman agreed that Silva may have been past his physical prime, but maintained that unlike some of Silva’s lackluster performances before and after that fight, at least “The Spider” was highly motivated.
“I’m aware that people will say ‘You didn’t get Anderson in his prime,’” Bisping said. “Well maybe it wasn’t his prime, but with the amount of shit I talked, you certainly see a difference in the way he fought me to the way he fought recently.”