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Rivera looks focused and calm. Bisping looks fired up and welcomes the early boos while walking out to “Song No. 2″ by Blur. Bisping egging Rivera on in the cage. Marc Goddard will ref the bout, no glove touch when they meet in the middle.
Round 1: They both take to the center immediately. Rivera pushes forward early. Neither man landing much of significance in the stand up, so Bisping dives in deep and completes a nice double leg takedown. After a bit of a scramble, Rivera gets to his feet and taunts Bisping. Rivera lands his right and Bisping drops for a takedown that is stuffed. Bisping goes for the takedown again and gets it, landing in Rivera’s guard. Bisping postures up and lands a few big punches before landing a blatantly illegal knee to the head of Rivera. Rivera is down and the action is halted. After a few moments of tension, a clearly wobbled Rivera says he can continue. Bisping gets a point deducted. Rivera with a partially blocked head kick and thena nice jab. Rivera pushing forward with the one-two and coming very close to connecting. Bisping goes for the takedown but it’s stuffed. Rivera switches stances. Bisping gets a double leg and lands in Rivera’s guard. Bisping landing with some solid ground and pound and follow up strikes against the cage. Rivera whiffing on one-twos at the close.
FightLine.com scores the round 9-9
Round 2: They trade inside leg kicks to start it and Rivera rocks Bisping with a right. Bisping tries for a takedown and it’s avoided. Rivera avoids another takedown. Rivera standing right in front of Bisping, not showing much movement. Bisping lands a combo and whiffs on a takedown. Bisping is teeing off on Rivera against the cage. Now come the knees. Bisping is battering a clearly withering Rivera. As Rivera wilts to the canvas the ref calls it. His victory and reputation will likely be marred by the very illegal strike he landed and then his command that Rivera, “Apologize” after the fight, followed up by a few choice words.
Michael Bisping defeated Jorge Rivera via TKO (strikes) 1:54 of Round 2.
Bisping apologizes for his post-fight disrespect and claims his respect for Rivera as an opponent, while the crowd boos. Rivera doesn’t hang around for an interview.