In August of last year, on an episode of The MMA Hour, Chris Weidman told Ariel Helwani that he found it “embarrassing” to tell people of Michael Bisping’s status as UFC middleweight champion.
A couple of months later, in October, Weidman went on the same show and used that word again, when talking about Bisping’s performance in a successful title defence against former PRIDE FC champion Dan Henderson.
Yet, despite the fact that Weidman had taken to routinely disparaging him, Bisping subsequently showed some real class in the aftermath of the American fighter’s devastating KO loss to Yoel Romero in November.
@ChrisWeidmanUFC I know we had our differences but I was rooting for you against that cheat.All class in defeat, look 4ward 2 ur next bout
— michael (@bisping) November 14, 2016
Over the weekend, Weidman suffered yet another defeat. But on this occasion Bisping wasn’t interested in exploring the scenery of the moral high-ground. Instead he laid into the former middleweight titlist, calling him a “little bitch”.
“The real talking point isn’t whether or not they were sloppy and how s**t Mousasi’s takedown defense was, and, yet again, how sloppy Chris’s striking is,” Bisping said on a recent episode of his podcast, ‘Believe You Me’. “The controversy and the talking point is the end of the fight(Transcript via MMAFighting).
“Weidman went in for yet another telegraphed takedown attempt, Mousasi kind of sprawled, kind of had him in a headlock position and from here, Chris tried to manipulate the rules. … If a person has one hand on the floor, in the past that was a downed opponent. What people used to do was, they used to touch the floor with that hand and then they couldn’t be kneed in the face, when realistically, they didn’t need to put that hand on the floor, they were totally manipulating the rules so they couldn’t be kneed.”
However, the rules recently changed. Now a fighter must have both their palms or fists, or one palm and one fist, on the canvas to be afforded the official’s protection from knee strikes.
In a hunched over position, Weidman was hit with a pair of knee’s from Mousasi. The first one was undoubtedly legal. The second one caused some controversy, though. Based on his initial viewing of the incident, referee Dan Miragliotta deemed the strike illegal and stopped the fight, informing Weidman that he had five minutes to recover.
Some have suggested that Weidman was indeed touching the floor with both hands at the earliest moment of impact, but if this is the case, he was only doing so with, at most, his fingertips. Thus, the knee was still legal.
Officials at ringside, having viewed a replay of the incident, came to the correct conclusion and informed Miragliotta that he had made a mistake. This is very controversial, due to the fact that referee’s in New York state are not supposed to have the benefit of information gleaned from replays in such instances. Nevertheless, Miragliotta changed course and suddenly declared the knees legal. After consulting medical personnel on site, he then decided to award the fight to Mousasi via TKO, claiming that Weidman was unfit to continue.
While most were sympathetic toward Weidman due to the bizarre and controversial circumstances surrounding the finish, Bisping claimed that the ‘All-American’ had tried to earn himself a disqualification victory with some theatrics and was punished for doing so.
“At a weigh-in, you try to make weight any way you can. At a fight, you’re supposed to be a man and f**king fight, not manipulate the rules and put one hand on the ground or two hands on the ground,” he said. “Be a man, stand up, fight, go out there, tooth and nail, bite down on your mouthpiece and lets f**king do this.”
“Chris Weidman has only got himself to blame for that fight being finished,” Bisping added. “It appeared, initially, that it was two illegal strikes. So Weidman thought he had five minutes. But come on, man, talk about an Oscar winning performance. He was laying it on thick. He thought he had five minutes but he was rolling around on the floor, clutching his head, [saying] ‘uhhhhhh.’ He was putting on a real performance here. He even rolled back from being on his knees on his backside.
“Because he was acting so hurt and so injured, the commission said, ‘no, you’re not continuing to fight,’ so they called it a TKO. I don’t know if that was the right decision, but Weidman was trying to win via a disqualification or, at the very most, trying to get a point deducted from Mousasi.
“At the end of the day, when those knees were delivered — and they were legal knees, we know that with the benefit of slo-mo replay — Weidman put on a performance.
“He rolled around on the floor. He clutched his head like a six-year-old that bangs his head and wants a Band-Aid from his mommy! He was holding his head like a little kid! ‘Uhhh, mommy, mommy, I’ve hurt my head.’ And then he tumbles back onto his backside and he’s rolling around on the floor looking so sorry for himself.
“I fought Anderson Silva. At the end of the third round, my mouthpiece came out, he dives up in the air, knees me in the face, opens stitches all over my face — I needed about 20 stitches in my face — I’m on the floor. As he kneed me, the buzzer went. Did I roll around on the floor going ‘mummy, mummy, please help.’ No! I got up, wiped the blood off my face, stuck my mouthpiece in, took a breath, had a sip of water, then went back out and fought. I didn’t roll around like a little b**ch on the floor hoping that the commission would give me a win by default. That’s what he did!
“Just like Daniel Cormier tried to manipulate his weight with that towel, Chris Weidman tried to manipulate the outcome of that fight due to that legal knee.”
The defeat was Weidman’s third in a row, as the aforementioned November loss to Romero was preceded by a a fourth-round stoppage defeat at hands of Luke Rockhold in December of 2015 – that one cost him the UFC middleweight crown.
Last June, Weidman was supposed to rematch Rockhold for the title, but he was forced to withdraw through injury. Bisping subsequently stepped in to replace him on short-notice and shockingly dethroned Rockhold via first-round KO.