Michael Bisping has said he wants to hang up the gloves, after fighting at the UFC’s March 17th card next year in London, and it sounds like that hasn’t changed.
Prior to Bisping’s bout today with Kelvin Gastelum, the 38 year-old had said that he wouldn’t be retiring after UFC Fight Night 122, win or lose. Instead, as noted above, Bisping wants to retire after he fights in his native England.
Well, following his quick, knockout loss today at the hands of Gastelum, Bisping told UFC announcer Jon Anik the following (quotes via MMA Junkie):
“Kelvin’s a great guy, but unfortunately, it’s going to take a bigger pile of (expletive) than him to get rid of me,” said Bisping, with his usual, sarcastic flair.
“I just want to say congratulations to Kelvin Gastelum. Job well done tonight – thank you all for being here. I was enjoying myself. He caught me with a good shot. God bless Kelvin. He’s young. I’ve been doing this for a long time, man. I’m getting old. God bless you all for being here. Thank you.”
Now, these comments should surprise anyone really, as Bisping’s made it pretty clear that he wants to retire after he fights where his career began. Further, after Bisping was choked out by Georges St-Pierre earlier this month, he said he didn’t want to end his career on a defeat like that.
But, and you likely knew a ‘but’ was coming, it remains to be seen if Bisping will in fact be ready to fight on March 17th. Yes, the card is approximately four months away, but Bisping did take some heavy, heavy shots in today’s scrap. After a knockout loss like that, there will certainly be questions in terms of whether fighting that soon is a good idea.
It will also be interesting to see what kind of opponent the UFC looks at for the March 17th card, if Bisping is in fact going to compete on it. One would think that considering it will be his retirement fight, and because of today’s result, it won’t be against one of the top middleweights in the promotion.
With today’s loss, the long time contender and former champ’s record fell to 30-9.