Days removed from his domination of Jason “Mayhem” Miller at The Ultimate Fighter Finale, Michael Bisping has his next fight lined up. No, it’s not Anderson Silva. Bisping will be facing a Brazilian, however, in fellow Top 10 ranked middleweight Demian Maia as part of the UFC on Fox 2 fight card in Chicago.
Bisping (22-3) is now on a four-fight winning streak since stumbling in a decision loss to Wanderlei Silva. Like most top middleweights, he’s been angling for a shot at the title wrapped around Anderson Silva’s waist, and Wanderlei Silva has been angling at a rematch with him. Neither will happen.
Bisping will instead have to make his way past Maia if he hopes to get a shot at Anderson Silva, who is out of commission, likely until sometime around late spring or early summer.
Maia (15-3) has already had a shot at Silva’s belt. He was unable to take it away when the two fought to a decision in Abu Dhabi at UFC 112, Silva taking the unanimous nod.
Maia is 3-1 since that fight, winning back-to-back bouts before stumbling against Mark Munoz, who faces Chael Sonnen, also on the UFC on Fox 2 fight card. Maia’s most recent action was a unanimous decision victory over Jorge Santiago at UFC 136 in Houston.
The winner of Sonnen vs. Munoz will get the next crack at Silva. And Bisping is edging closer and closer to a title shot. But Maia holds a victory over Sonnen, so if he is able to defeat Bisping, he could make a case to be back in the running for a rematch with Silva later in the year.
UFC on Fox 2 is co-headlined by Rashad Evans vs. Phil Davis taking top billing, and Sonnen vs. Munoz in the co-main slot at the United Center on Jan. 28 in Chicago.