Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone, as UFC 217 blew the roof off Madison Square Garden last Saturday night (Nov. 4, 2017) in New York City.
Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including Cody Garbrandt, who was knocked out by T.J. Dillashaw in the second road, coughing up his Bantamweight title in the process (recap). And Joanna Jedrzejczyk, who was stopped by Rose Namajunas in the very first round (see it), suffering the first loss of her professional career and dropping the women’s Strawweight title, as well.
But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now 48 hours removed from the show?
“The Count” talked the talk and unfortunately couldn’t walk the walk, as he suffered a third-round submission loss to Georges St-Pierre in the main event of the evening. Bisping couldn’t use his size to his advantage against “Rush,” who utilized his jab and boxing skills to pepper “The Count” while scoring a couple of takedowns.
Once on the ground, though, Bisping did his damage, as he managed to land some significant blows on St-Pierre, slicing open the French-Canadian with elbows which resulted in “Rush” leaking blood like a broken faucet.
In the third round, however, St-Pierre dropped “The Count” with a left hand and proceeded to pound on the fallen champ with one vicious elbow after another. After giving up his back, “The Count” found himself stuck in an air-tight rear-naked choke. But, showing the heart of the champion, “The Count” never tapped, opting to take a nap which resulted in his first loss since 2014 and coughing up his much-beloved Middleweight strap.
Despite losing to a smaller man who has always competed at 170 pounds, there is no shame in dropping your strap to one of the the greatest to ever do it. And despite rumors of a potential retirement, Michael reassured fight fans he wasn’t going out on a loss.
“Listen, I love doing what I do. I’m from a small town in the northwest of England, I never thought I’d be headlining Madison Square Garden. And I’ll be damned if the last time I do it is me getting choked out on TV. So, it wasn’t my night, but that’s the way (it goes) with professional sports. One man or one team wins, and one man or one team loses,” said Bisping during the post-fight presser.
And he doesn’t need an extended period of time off, either, as he said he wouldn’t mind returning to action in March when the promotion invades his home turf of England for UFC Fight Night 127. As for who his potential opponent may be, there are plenty of intriguing matchups waiting for Bisping.
For my money, I’d like to see him face Yoel Romero, who also came up short in his previous title fight to Robert Whittaker. Bisping and “Soldier of God’ have a very heated history, which has seen the men insult one another any chance they get.
With both men coming off losses against the new champion and current interim champion, pitting them against one another simply makes sense. The winner won’t necessarily be in line for a shot at the title, but it definitely gets them closer.
Unless you have a better idea?