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15th Jun 2016

British UFC champ Michael Bisping calls out Georges St-Pierre for first title defence

"Just be a man"

Darragh Murphy

Michael Bisping is not short of potential opponents but, at 37 years old, there’s no viable way that he could fit them all in before he hangs up his gloves.

Fresh from claiming the UFC middleweight title in the main event of UFC 199, Bisping has his pick of challengers for his 185lb crown.

‘The Count’ has already ruled out the possibility of handing former champ Luke Rockhold, who was knocked out by Bisping less than two weeks ago, an immediate rematch.

Chris Weidman, ‘Jacare’ Souza and Yoel Romero (when he returns from suspension) are all currently in the reckoning while there’s been rumblings of a rematch with Dan Henderson.

Henderson famously knocked Bisping out at UFC 100 with an overhand right that has become a go-to on UFC highlight reels ever since it took place in 2009.

“Of course, there’s been talk about Dan Henderson, which kind of came out of the blue,” Bisping said on the MMA Hour. “Dan Henderson kind of tweeted it out, and Joe Rogan put a picture on Instagram, and that seems to be getting a lot of traction.

“Of course, that is a fight that I would love,” the recently-crowned middleweight champion admitted.

“There hasn’t been any kind of offer or anything like that, but that’s a fight that I would take because everybody knows about UFC 100, and Dan Henderson still has an image of him floating above my head while I’m knocked out as his logo. So, I would like to put him in his place.”

A more unexpected name that has cropped up is that of Georges St-Pierre who has toyed with the idea of returning to the UFC throughout the year.

Many had hoped that he’d make an appearance at UFC 200 next month but that ship has sailed.

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St-Pierre has upped his training at Tristar and it’s believed that he has been in talks with his former employer but that a sticking point is the UFC’s Reebok deal which would be at odds with St-Pierre’s contract with Under Armour.

But if that snag can be overcome then there is no reason that we shouldn’t expect the welterweight legend to return to the Octagon.

Bisping was asked about welcoming GSP back to the UFC and the Manchester middleweight admitted that it had crossed his mind.

UFC 199: Rockhold v Bisping 2

“It kind of has now that you mentioned it,” Bisping said. “As you said, fighting Georges St-Pierre [would be] great, and of course for the title for who has the most wins in UFC history.

“I mean, that alone is a fantastic tagline and great promotion. And of course, the numbers would be fantastic with Georges St-Pierre, he’s a massive, proven draw, and at the end of the day we’ll try to generate as much money as possible.

“I do want to defend the belt, and I want to make as much money as I can in the process. So, I would certainly be open to sending Georges St-Pierre back to a movie set because that would be a fight I would definitely win and if Georges St-Pierre is listening, any time you fancy it, just be a man and sign on the dotted line and your return will be short-lived.”

We can’t wait.