It’s been less than a month since Michael Bisping was knocked to the back of the line of middleweight contenders by Vitor Belfort’s left leg, but “The Count” is already set to get back into the cage and try to make the MMA world forget about his recent setback.

Bisping was just a win away from a shot at Anderson Silva’s middleweight crown heading into the bout with Belfort, but after a performance that left much to be desired on “The Count’s” end, he’s going to have to make up a lot of ground in his next fight if he expects to become a contender again.

Of course, over the last few years Bisping has made it clear that he wants to be one of the most active fighters in the entire UFC, so it shouldn’t be a huge surprise to fight fans to see Bisping already preparing to return to the Octagon. The former Ultimate Fighter winner will attempt to get back on track against Alan Belcher in the co-main event of UFC 159, and if he’s successful, he’ll likely find himself back in the mix at 185.

But is taking a fight against Belcher so soon after a high-profile loss the best move for Bisping to make at this stage of his career?

A lot of fighters make sure to take some time off after such a loss, either to attempt to recharge their batteries or just to let the public forget about their last performance. However, Bisping is taking the exact opposite approach and accepted an extremely important fight on a card that is sure to get a decent amount of pay-per-view buys with Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen locked in to headline the card.

If Bisping wins, this bold move could very easily end up working out in his favor. As long as he doesn’t turn in a completely lackluster victory, there will likely be enough eyes on Bisping to make the average fan forget about “The Count’s” uninspiring performance against Belfort.

On the flip side, another bad fight for Bisping this close to a knockout loss could be a blow that even he can’t bounce back from. And to make matters worse, this isn’t exactly a “gimme” fight for Bisping. Belcher has good striking skills and the ability to finish fights quickly, and Bisping’s usual strategy to stand and win exchanges gets a lot more dangerous with a fighter like Belcher in the cage.

Even if Bisping tries to get the fight to the mat and mix things up, much like he did against Brian Stann, things aren’t guaranteed to go smoothly. “The Talent” stops almost as many fighters on the mat as he does on the feet, and Bisping will have to remain poised if the fight hits the ground.

This is a seriously dangerous fight for Bisping, especially coming off such a huge loss, and the fact that he even accepted this shows that he’s getting a bit desperate after failing to get into a title fight again. It looks like Bisping is starting to realize that the window to become a world champion is slowly closing on him, and his willingness to fight just a few months after such a momentum-killing loss proves that he’s already working towards getting back into title contention.

If Bisping ever wants to accomplish his goal of becoming champion, he can’t afford another setback. That’s why taking a quick fight against Belcher makes sense and why Bisping has no choice but to get right back inside the cage. The Brit doesn’t have the luxury of waiting for the rest of the world to forget about his last fight, he has to give them something new to remember in its place.

“The Count” is running out of time, and he knows it. Taking this fight shows that he’s willing to do something about it.

Photo: Michael Bisping (Esther Lin/MMA Fighting)

About The Author

Vince Carey
Staff Writer

Vince Carey has been writing about the sport of mixed martial arts since 2010. Although he is just 21 years old, the Omaha-based writer is looking to provide readers with interesting content on all things related to MMA.