Michael Bisping will headline UFC Fight Night 83 on February 27 in England against Anderson Silva, and he’s been looking forward to the opportunity for quite some time. However, some of the luster has been taken off of this dream fight for Bisping because of Silva’s positive test for banned substances and subsequent suspension following UFC 182.
“We’re all chasing a dream – a dream of being a champion,” Bisping told reporters on a conference call, courtesy of MMAjunkie.com. “You’ve got to do it through hard work and determination. But Anderson Silva tested positive for not one, not two, but for three banned substances. And while I respect him as a fighter, I lost a lot of respect for him for that. To call yourself a martial artist and take performance-enhancing drugs is the biggest contradiction you can make. I hope Anderson is tested many times (before we fight). He should be tested many times because he failed the test – not once, not twice, but three times.”
Despite the loss of respect, fighting and beating Silva is still something Bisping really wanted to do.
“For me, Anderson is a legend of the sport,” Bisping said. “He was a longtime middleweight champion and a guy I wanted to fight for a long time. Of course I wanted to fight him when he was champion. But this is my biggest fight outside of a title fight right now. I always wanted to test myself against him and I knew I could beat him. When (UFC President) Dana (White) called me and said the opponent had changed to Anderson, I was thrilled. I always wanted to show the world I could beat Anderson, and now I can.”