Although it's not fully confirmed, it's expected that old rivals Michael Bisping and Dan Henderson will collide in a middleweight championship tilt at UFC 204 in Manchester, England.
'The Count' and 'Hendo' have a rivalry dating back to 2009, when both middleweights went back-and-forth on The Ultimate Fighter before settling things in the Octagon at UFC 100. In one of the promotion's most successful events ever, Henderson blasted Bisping with an atomic overhand right and sent shockwaves throughout the MMA community. It's largely considered one of the most memorable KO's in UFC history and Bisping is planning to redeem himself in October.
Speaking on his exclusive podcast 'The Countdown', Bisping says he plans to avenge the loss but thinks Henderson will use 'sneaky' performance-enhancing drugs to give him an advantage.
"Let me tell you this, lightning does not strike twice," Bisping said, per Jed Meshew of MMA Fighting. "It struck once the first time, it will not strike twice. There will be no TRT, no drugs, no steroids, no performance-enhancing drugs. Dan Henderson I challenge you to announce to me at the press conference that you will not take any performance-enhancing drugs, that if USADA show up on any day, any time they can test you, because I think he's gonna cheat. I think he's gonna go out there and have some sneaky PEDs because he's gonna think, ‘Well screw it. If I get suspended, so what? I'm retiring anyway.'"
Henderson, who is now listed as the oldest ranked fighter in the UFC, announced that he'll be retiring win or lose against Bisping. The multiple promotion world champion turns 46 later this month and, despite his admitted use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) in the past, is still considered one of the sport's biggest legends.
Bisping, though, believes Henderson will blatantly look to flout the rules if it means winning the middleweight title in his retirement fight.
"I think he's gonna juice because if he gets popped, he's just gonna get suspended. That is no consequence to him and people will remember that he retired as champion even though it would be a No Contest. If he was to get the win, he could still retire saying, ‘I just beat the world champion.'"
Bisping, who became the first British champion in UFC history by knocking out Luke Rockhold at UFC 199, will look to defend the title against Henderson at UFC 204 on October 8 in Manchester, England.