The main event at UFC 217 saw a clash for the middleweight title between MMA legends Michael Bisping and George St-Pierre.
Before the fight took place, a war of words was waged by both men (but especially Bisping) for months on end. This became a word-war of attrition after the original bout had to be pushed back due to GSP suffering an eye injury.
Still, Bisping continued to lay siege on his opponent, making fun of everything, from St-Pierre’s fighting style to the way he dresses (like a stockbroker and/or history teacher, apparently).
That didn’t seem to faze the former welterweight champ, however:
“He’s got a big mouth…If he wants to waste his energy like this, it’s all good,” St-Pierre said. “I’ve got one goal in mind, and that’s it. I will retire him…You’re going to be beaten by a history teacher on Saturday.”
This was Bisping’s second title defence and his first since a close-fought battle with Dan Henderson at UFC 204 in October 2016 and he took offence at what he saw as GSP’s perception that it’d be an easy fight.
“The truth of the matter is Georges fell into the trap of what a lot of people fall into,” Bisping says. “You fell into the trap of thinking he can beat me – that’s it. That’s why you want to fight me. That’s why you kept asking (UFC President) Dana (White) for me. Nobody else, because you think you can beat me. You think in your little tiny pea-brain that you can beat me. But you can’t.
“That will be the mistake you make, the trap that a lot of people fall into. They see me on TV, they say, ‘This guy is beatable.’ But what you can’t see is what I’ve got in (my heart and my mind). You’re going to find out that you never should have come back, pal.”
The bookies were split on who would take this one out: originally, GSP was the favourite but in the days leading up to the fight, both men were paying $1.90.
After a fascinating 3 round battle, GSP secured victory with a rear naked choke in the third round. GSP started the fight well, with commentator Joe Rogan saying he was the best he’d ever seen him. As the fight grew longer Bisping settled in and questions were being asked of GSP’s gas tank.
However GSP landed a left hook that dropped Bisping, he quickly swarmed him on the ground and landed some solid ground and pound. He then took advantage of a recovering Bisping and sunk in an unstoppable rear naked choke.
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