UFC On Fox 2 Fight Card Primer: Chael Sonnen Vs. Michael Bisping

Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

People have wanted to see this bout for a long time, and it's finally here. It's a shame there wasn't more time to build it up, but sometimes these things can't be helped in the quickly-evolving world of MMA. On one side of the cage, you have a self-proclaimed champion and gangster. On the other side, you have a brash, colorful Brit. The winner gets the (real) champ, Anderson Silva. Chael Sonnen (26-11-1, 5-4 UFC) meets Michael Bisping (22-3, 12-3 UFC).

Sonnen currently sits in the 2 spot at middleweight in the USA Today/BE Consensus Rankings, while Bisping is at number 7. Sonnen will stay right where he is with a win, and will have a date with Anderson Silva in a soccer stadium in Brazil. If Bisping can get the W, he'll move into the top five for the first time in his career and could possibly meet Silva in his home country of England. This middleweight UFC on Fox 2 fight will be the second fight of the main card and will be aired live on Fox. The broadcast begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.

How do these two stack up?

Sonnen: 34 years old | 6'1" | 74" reach
Bisping: 32 years old | 6'2" | 76" reach

What have these two done recently?

Sonnen: W - Brian Stann (SUB) | L - Anderson Silva (SUB) | W - Nate Marquardt (UD)
Bisping: W - Jason Miller (TKO) | W - Jorge Rivera (TKO) | W - Yoshihiro Akiyama (UD)

How did these two get here?

After a disappointing 1-2 run in the UFC back 2005-06, Chael Sonnen spent a couple of years on the AAA circuit before being brought into the WEC. His memorable run there included questionable submissions, crazy opponents, and the typical Sonnen bluster. After a move back to the UFC, he was brilliantly submitted in his first bout by Demian Maia, and it seemed like Chael was destined to be average. Three straight wins over top competition changed that though, and once he turned up the volume on his character and got more and more outrageous, he managed to capture the attention of the MMA world and earned a title shot in the process. His bout with Anderson Silva is a classic, where Chael dominated Anderson for 23 minutes before Anderson managed to submit him from the bottom. Sonnen rebounded with a dominant win over Brian Stann at UFC 136 and was supposed to meet Mark Munoz here, but an injury to Munoz has given Bisping the spot on the other side of the cage.

Michael "The Count" Bisping is a staple of the UFC middleweight division. He was the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 3 at light heavyweight, and competed at 205 until a split-decision loss to Rashad Evans in 2007. He is 8-2 at middleweight since dropping down, with his only losses coming to Dan Henderson's H-Bomb and Wanderlei Silva by decision. He is currently on a four-fight winning streak and was expected to face Demian Maia here, but will now get a shot at Sonnen and a possible title shot if he can win.

Why should you care?

You shouldn't even need to ask this question. Both of these guys are controversial and either loved or hated. Even if you take the characters out of the situation, you have two top middleweights vying for a chance at the belt. This is top-level stuff here.

SBN coverage of UFC on Fox 2

You can catch more UFC on Fox 2 preview content from Bloody Elbow after the jump.

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