Michael Bisping promises rematch with Luke Rockhold will be much different
Ever since Michael Bisping was submitted by Luke Rockhold in 2014, he's been gunning for a rematch, and now he'll get his chance with the middleweight title on the line at UFC 199.
Bisping stepped up on just over two weeks' notice to face Rockhold in the new main event following an injury to former champion Chris Weidman.
Weeks before Bisping was in the fight, he told FOX Sports from the set of "xXx: The Return of Xander Cage" that he believed Rockhold would beat Weidman and then he would earn his long-awaited rematch anyway.
Now Bisping has his chance to face Rockhold and he's never doubted for a second that if he got the rematch, things would go much differently than the first time.
"That first fight I was doing OK until the head butt, and then blood was pouring into my eyes, but whatever," Bisping told FOX Sports prior to his fight with Rockhold being announced. "He beat me fair and square on that night."
Since their last meeting, Rockhold has remained undefeated while dispatching Weidman last December to win the UFC middleweight title and up his record to 5-1 with five straight wins inside the Octagon.
The fight with Rockhold was the last time Bisping tasted defeat as well, and he's gone on to win three in a row, including a unanimous decision over former middleweight king Anderson Silva.
As much as a loss angers him, Bisping concedes that Rockhold got the better of him in their first meeting, but he warns the middleweight champion that he shouldn't believe that the same thing will happen when they meet again.
"Yeah, he dropped me with a good head kick, and after that I was kind of concussed, didn't know what I was doing, and he choked me out. That's fair, God bless him," Bisping said.
"It won't go that way again, that's for sure."
Bisping will have less than two weeks to prepare for the rematch, but in his mind he's already been thinking about a second fight with Rockhold ever since the first one ended. Bisping believes this moment is his destiny and he will walk out with the UFC middleweight title.
At UFC 199, he'll get his chance to avenge the loss and to win his first UFC title almost exactly 10 years to the day he debuted in the promotion after winning "The Ultimate Fighter" Season 3.