Michael Bisping has long been a contender in the UFC middleweight division, but as the years have went by his chances of a title shot have began to peter away. On Saturday night, the Englishman entered the Octagon against C.B. Dollaway, in hopes of reigniting his career and taking one step closer to a fight for the belt. In Dollaway, Bisping would be facing a stiff test and it would be a test he would pass with flying colors.
Michael Bisping is notorious for being a late starter and Saturday night proved no different. Dollaway caught the Brit with a crisp check-left hook which almost ended the fight, but Bisping managed to recover and make it to the end of the first round. In the final two stanzas it was all Michael Bisping. Utilizing a varied striking offense, Bisping regularly landed on the feet with crisp combos to earn himself a clear unanimous victory.
Michael Bisping def. C.B. Dollaway via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
What was the high point of the fight?
Dollaway's near knockout. In the first round, C.B. landed the cleanest strike of the fight, almost rendering Bisping unconscious in the process.
Where do these two go from here?
Bisping is in a precarious position. He seems to be able to beat all but the very best that the UFC has to offer. With Anderson Silva's title contention days over, it might be time to finally put that fight together, especially if Silva's suspension isn't overly long. Alternatively, a fight with Yoel Romero or Ronaldo Souza could be made if Bisping is hoping to get back in the cage soon.
Clarence Byron finds himself on a two-fight skid for the first time since 2011 and while he has lost soundly in both fights, it is clear to see that he has improved significantly since his early UFC days. Next time out expect him to face the loser of the fight between Gegard Mousasi and Costas Philippou.
Watch now, later, or never?
Later. It was a typical Bisping fight: fun at times but missable.