Dana White's announcement of the soon-to-be middleweight title fight between Michael Bisping and Georges St-Pierre yesterday was not without its fair share of detractors. In fact, one might say that it was greeted with an almost overwhelming negative response from fans, who relentlessly mocked the matchup on Twitter in the moments following the announcement.
But while many fans have been steadfast in their belief that Yoel Romero "deserved" the next shot at Bisping, "The Count" is here to set the record straight. Appearing on last night's edition of UFC Tonight, the middleweight champion addressed his critics directly, stating his belief that he has earned that big payday he's been chasing after in his waning years as a fighter.
“I know there’s people out there that are going to criticize saying that I should fight the No. 1 contender, guys like Yoel Romero, and they’re absolutely right,” Bisping said. “Now if you are Yoel Romero or Luke Rockhold or ‘Jacare’ (Souza) or any of these guys: If you are offered a fight with ‘GSP,’ I know for a fact you’re going to take that fight, so why shouldn’t I do the same?
“I deserve this payday. I deserve this fight. Not only to do with the payday, I want this fight for my legacy. I’ve beat Dan Henderson. I’ve beat Anderson Silva. Georges St-Pierre is also another legend that I want to add to my resume.”
Given the almost unmatchable amount of work that Bisping has put in over the course of his UFC career – which includes a UFC record 20 wins, the 3rd most knockouts (10) and the 2nd most total fight time in promotional history – it's hard to really put up much of an argument here. This is prize fighting, after all, and the UFC is a business first and foremost: two concepts which seem to escape many fans when criticizing why certain matchups are made.
Is Bisping vs. GSP the most logical matchup to make? Hardly, but we lost our ability to campaign for "fairness" and "logic" in MMA matchmaking the day that Randy Couture fought James Toney. Embrace the chaos, MMA fans. Embrace the chaos.