With less than a month to go until he steps into the Octagon with Georges St-Pierre, Michael Bisping is backtracking on his recent comments that he might retire following the fight.
Welcoming St-Pierre back to the UFC following a four-year hiatus is the biggest fight of Bisping’s life, and that’s saying a lot. The 38-year-old Brit has spent the majority of his 13-plus year career in the UFC. He has amassed a 30-7 record, defeating the likes of Dan Henderson, Anderson Silva, Luke Rockhold, and many others.
St-Pierre would, however, be the brightest feather in his cap.
“It’s an iconic arena; it’s a big fight. It’s Georges St-Pierre. Everybody knows who Georges St-Pierre is. There’s not many people who have crossed over from the MMA fanbase into the mainstream, and Georges, I’d say he’s there. Maybe not as much as, say, a Conor (McGregor) or a Ronda (Rousey), but he’s not far behind, so it’s a big fight,” Bisping said during a September edition of The MMA Hour.
“And yeah, I think the career I’ve had, the years I’ve been in the UFC, the injuries I’ve had, the ups and downs, getting close to title fights and all of this, there’s a possibility this might be my last ever fight. I don’t know if I’ll fight again after this. What a way to go out if it is.”
That was far from definitive, but it’s a notion that Bisping repeated several times after that interview.
As the months give way to weeks and the weeks give way to days, Bisping has started to backtrack on the idea of retiring. He and St-Pierre are slated to headline UFC 217 on Nov. 4 in New York.
“Listen, a lot of people were asking me about (retirement),” Bisping said at Friday’s UFC 217 press conference in Toronto. “I love this too much. I love this whole process, getting ready for a training camp. Eight weeks ago, I was out of shape. Now I feel like I’m the champion of the world. I can beat anyone on this planet, especially this guy. I love that whole process. So, no, I won’t be retiring.”