The UFC’s battling Brit, Michael Bisping, has earned an impressive 25-7 record in his eleven year MMA career, falling just short of a UFC title shot. But while he has scored impressive wins over the likes of Brian Stann, Alan Belcher, and Cung Le in recent years, it’s safe to say he is at least as well known for his braggadocio.
So it was somewhat surprising to hear him speak openly about a shortcoming or three, as he spoke to MMA Heat’s Karyn Bryant in an interview published yesterday.
Bisping, who faces CB Dolloway at UFC 186 this weekend, has relocated from his hometown in Liverpool, England to Southern California in hopes of furthering his MMA career. “The Count” has gone as far to state that if he had access to his current training camp earlier in his career, he would be a champion by now.
“100%, I do believe that,” Bisping said. “It’s with a heavy heart I say that, because I’ve dedicated so much of my life to this sport and it’s taken me so long to figure out the pieces. I’m still my own head coach, so I’ve been in control of what I’ve been doing. It’s nobody’s fault, apart from, perhaps, my own, for not allowing someone else to take the reins more. I don’t know. I’m a strong man in person, perhaps the location — where I’ve been living, the opportunities for training haven’t been there.”
He didn’t just mean back in England, either.
“Because I’m in the middleweight division,” he continued, “Reign MMA, where I’ve been training recently — I wouldn’t have entertained training there because Mark Muñoz and I are in the same division. So it’s been difficult. I’ve always had good coaches, but training partners is what I’ve struggled with. You’re only as good as the people you train with.”
It would seem all is coming together for Bisping, finally, with Muñoz said to retire next month after a fight in the Philippines. But, times are a-changin’ at Reign MMA as well, Bisping.
“Reign is becoming more of a specialized wrestling facility,” Bisping said. “There’s still a bunch of great guys that train there. We’re still working on that, so who knows? But all I’m thinking about is Saturday night. The next training camp? After I destroy CB I’ll think about where I’ll train next!”
The full interview, including some of his more typical trash talk, is here: