UFC President Dana White confirmed this past Saturday with media following The Ultimate Fighter Finale that Bisping is in fact the next challenger for UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, if he can get past Belfort.
“For me, Christmas is coming late this year. Normally, it’s Dec. 25. For me, Christmas is going to be Jan. 19 when I go down to Brazil, beat the living snot out of Vitor Belfort and take my title fight, my rightly deserved title fight, my long overdue title fight,” Bisping said of possibly becoming the 11th title challenger for Silva.
“I haven’t personally heard anything from Dana or the UFC. I heard him on the weekend say I’d probably get a shot at Silva if I beat Belfort. I honestly believe that I would deserve it. In my mind, Vitor Belfort is the hardest fight in the middleweight division outside of Anderson Silva. My last fight was against Brian Stann. Before that, it was a controversial loss against Chael Sonnen. Before that, I hadn’t lost a fight since 2009. So if I beat Vitor, I think I definitely deserve a shot, I’m definitely the number one contender and I’ll look forward to facing Anderson.”
Bisping was as confident as always when speaking about what his expectations are of the upcoming fight.
“Vitor hits hard and he knocks people out. Brian Stann, my last fight – he hits hard, he hits fast and he knocks people out. That wasn’t a problem for me. This fight, I believe I’ve got more tools than Vitor. He’s got a great submission game, but I believe I can counter that and I’m not afraid of that. It’s funny how black belts go to white belts when you start punching them and elbowing them in the face. So he’s going to have to prepare for that. I’m going to fight hard and I’m going to fight fast. Vitor’s good for the first minute, the first round, and after that, he tends to wear a little. This is a five round fight, and I believe that’s better for me and I truly believe I can finish Vitor in his own backyard.”
“Anderson is, rightly so, regarded as the pound-for-pound best. What can I do? I’ve never gotten in with him – I don’t know. I believe in myself, I believe in my skills, I believe in my training, I believe in my ferocity as a fighter. I’ll get in there and I’ll fight him. I certainly ain’t going to fall down like some of these bums have done lately.”
Check out the full video courtesy of AXS TV below: