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23rd Dec 2016

Michael Bisping completely shuts down co-host’s attempt to remove Conor McGregor from FOTY discussion


Ben Kiely

What a year Michael Bisping has had.

He kicked off 2016 with a phenomenal decision win over one of the all-time greats, Anderson Silva, in front of a home crowd in London.

This stellar performance was enough to earn him a second crack at Luke Rockhold when Chris Weidman pulled out of UFC 199’s main event on extremely short notice. Despite having been finished by Rockhold a year and a half before, Bisping stepped up and knocked the Californian out in the first round to become the undisputed UFC middleweight champion.

To cap it all off, he successfully defended the belt in his rematch against the retiring Dan Henderson in Europe’s first ever PPV stadium event in Manchester at UFC 204.

It was a perfect year by anyone’s standards and it was enough to earn him the prestigious Fighter of the Year accolade from Rolling Stone magazine, beating the likes of Stipe Miocic, Conor McGregor and Dominick Cruz to the award.

The prize came up during a recent episode of his Sirius XM show The Countdown and his co-host Luis J Gomez argued that no other fighter even came close to being considered Fighter of the Year. He contested that McGregor losing to Nate Diaz at UFC 196 took him out of the running, despite the fact that he achieved history by being the first fighter to hold two UFC belts simultaneously.

“People were bitching online that Conor (McGregor) didn’t get it. Conor lost in 2016. I feel like that’s one of the things you’re disqualified as Fighter of the Year if you have a loss in the year.”

Michael Bisping was having none of it though, he felt that McGregor’s achievements in 2016 couldn’t be ignored and if he could vote for anyone to be Fighter of the Year (aside from himself, of course) he’d pick the Notorious.

“I disagree and to be honest when you said ‘who would you give it to?’ I would probably, myself not included, give it to Conor.”

“I mean, yeah, he did lose to Nate Diaz, but he avenged that loss in a rematch and then of course, he became a two-division champ. That is hard to top. He was on the biggest events, the biggest PPVs of the year, the fights were great, so yeah, to be honest I think my vote would go with Conor.”