Michael Bisping has an army of contenders wanting to take his spot as the next UFC middleweight champion. In fact, many of those contenders don’t think ‘The Count’ is even deserving of his No. 1 spot, claiming that he got lucky and is running away from the competition.
Amongst those contenders is the No. 3 ranked Ronaldo Souza, who really laid into Bisping at a recent UFC 208 media scrum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Jacare called the UFC champ a ‘chicken’ and said he fights for his own selfish, greedy reasons while neglecting his fans and family.
“Bisping is a chicken. He’s running,” Souza told Fernanda Prates of MMA Junkie.
“The truth is that (Bisping) doesn’t fight for his honor, or for his family. He doesn’t even fight for himself. He’s a guy who only thinks about money. He only thinks about doing his thing and fighting for money. That’s his first choice. He doesn’t care about his fans. He doesn’t care what the fans want. The fans are the ones who pay for this scoundrel’s salary, so he better respect them.”
Bisping shocked the world when he knocked out the highly touted Luke Rockhold to win the 185 lbs belt at UFC 199. The Brit went on to defend his title on home soil in Manchester, England against Dan Henderson, who knocked out Bisping eight years ago at UFC 100.
The rematch was an instant classic, but Souza says it was a ‘disaster’.
“I’m the guy to fight for the belt,” Souza said. “Everyone knows that I’m the most viable option for the UFC in terms of media, pay-per-view sales, everything. Everyone knows that Bisping’s fight with Dan Henderson was a disaster.
“They didn’t even show how many pay-per-view packages it sold. It certainly was a disaster. No one was interested in watching that crappy fight. The UFC sold the tickets in six minutes, because of Bisping – if he wasn’t there, they’d have sold out in three minutes.”
Bisping, who turns 38 next month, is expected to be out of action until May due to knee surgery. That gives time for Souza to cement his spot as the next No. 1 contender, and the Brazilian will look to move one step closer to a title shot when he takes on Tim Boetsch at UFC 208.
The pay-per-view, which features a headlining women’s featherweight championship bout between Holly Holm and Germaine de Randamie, takes place on Feb. 11 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.