Highly-touted middleweight Michael Bisping (22-4) recently saw his hopes for a title-shot go up in smoke after losing a close, semi-controversial decision to Chael Sonnen in late January. However, given the division’s current landscape the brash Brit is confident he can regain his footing as a top contender with a single win, challenging the winner of Sonnen’s summer shot at champion Anderson Silva.
The 33-year old’s attempt to collect that crucial victory comes in July when he’ll face Tim Boetsch (15-4) at UFC 148. While it appears “The Count” could have opted for Cung Le, arguably an easier match-up when comparing Le’s recent success to that of Boetsch, Bisping’s eye is planted firmly on the belt rather than padding his record.
“Tim Boetsch is coming off a great win over Yushin Okami…it just made more sense and was the more appealing matchup,” explained Bisping during an interview on MMAJunkie Radio. “It’s also a tougher matchup for me. I want to win that next fight and stake a claim to that title shot. I think beating Tim Boetsch rather than Cung Le gives me more grounds to do that.”
Boestch has gone 3-0 since dropping down to 185 pounds with success against Kendall Grove, Nick Ring, and most recently Okami. His finish of the latter was particularly memorable based on the comeback nature of it, as Boetsch had clearly lost the first two rounds before battling back in the third.
“He’s looked great, and he’s had some good wins. As I said, he had a huge KO of Okami, who was recently the #1 contender. I think that puts him pretty high up there in the rankings, and those are the guys I want to fight,” Bisping concluded.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC