No fighter steps into the cage 100-percent healthy but it turns out Michael Bisping probably should have bowed out of his title fight against Georges St-Pierre last November after suffering an injury just a week ahead of UFC 217.
According to Bisping, he was going through a final sparring session before leaving for the fight and a training partner executed a takedown that ended with the British fighter tearing cartilage in his ribs.
Even Bisping admits he probably shouldn’t have been sparring that close to the fight and he has no one to blame but himself for what unfolded.
“I actually tore the cartilage in my ribs the week before the fight,” Bisping revealed when speaking to the “True Geordie” podcast. “It was the final training session, we shouldn’t have done this sparring session, this sounds like an excuse. I didn’t talk about it at the time because it sounds like you’re making excuses but the reality was on the Friday before we flew to New York, Dean [Ammasinger] was out there, he was helping me a little bit and he shot in for a double leg takedown like his life depended on it. Ran me across the Octagon, I went down and he landed on top of my ribs.
“Generally that would be fine, but as soon as I went down, I felt something rip so I couldn’t move, I couldn’t rotate, I couldn’t do anything.”
Of course, Bisping had no intention of dropping out of the fight so he traveled to New York in hopes that some physical therapy and treatment would allow him to compete without the ribs really bothering him.
Unfortunately it sounds like that didn’t work out very well but Bisping promises he’s not making any excuses about his loss or taking anything away from St-Pierre on a job well done by earning a third round submission victory to become middleweight champion.
“I got to New York and I was having treatment on it everyday, it was an absolute nightmare,” Bisping said. “So people said to me ‘you looked a little stiff in there, Michael’. Yeah, I was stiff for a very good reason. I tore the cartilage in my ribs but it was a big fight, a lot of money on the line, and as a fighter you still think you can do it.
“It wasn’t my best performance, it didn’t go my way, but not taking anything away from Georges. God bless him, good for him, he got the job done.”