UFC middleweight fighter Michael Bisping made it two in a row tonight when he defeated Yoshihiro Akiyama at the O2 Arena in London, England. “The Count” had to work for his win, however, as Akiyama did his best to put him away every minute of the fight.
Bisping and Akiyama brought the action right away with “Sexyama” landing the first punches of note and keeping Bisping on his heels with heavy shots. Fighting in front of a home crowd, Bisping began to settle in during the first round and combined a near-constant output of strikes with level-changes to keep his opponent off balance. Bisping punctuated the first round with a flying knee but the impressive strike did little to deter Akiyama, who kept wading in during the second round. That was mostly the story of the fight from there on out; though Akiyama continuously threatened and hurt Bisping with heavy shots, “The Count” never lost steam and continued delivering strikes in volume. When Bisping did find time to sit down on his punches, he slowed Akiyama considerably. After three rounds of fighting, the judges at UFC 120 awarded Bisping the unanimous decision (30-27 across the board) victory.
Bisping improves to 20-3 with the victory and makes it two in a row since losing to Wanderlei Silva at UFC 110. “The Count’s” UFC record sits at 10-3 now. Akiyama falls to 13-3 and makes it 1-2 in the Octagon. Bisping added more evidence to the argument that he is, in fact, one of the top middleweights in the division and also brought himself a little bit closer to the title shot he says that he is ready for. Akiyama’s performance, while entertaining as ever, was indicative of his tendency to forego tactics and strategy for a slugfest; should the judoka wish to do more in the middleweight division than entertain.