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UFC 199: Why Rockhold Beats Bisping

Luke Rockhold was supposed to defend his UFC Middleweight Championship against Chris Weidman after the two had an entertaining battle in their last outing. Instead, Weidman needs neck surgery and we get to see Rockhold take on Michael Bisping.

Let’s face the truth here – there is almost no way that Rockhold loses this battle at UFC 199. But, if you need any more convincing, here are three reasons you will be hearing ‘And still’ to close out the card.

Bisping: Hollywood Star?

Michael Bisping took this fight on extremely short notice and he wasn’t even training. The Brit was filming the next xXx movie with Vin Diesel in Toronto when he got the call that he would finally get a crack at the belt. Bisping has openly said that his cardio will not be nearly the level it usually is.

That spells major trouble for a fighter like Bisping who is a volume-based striker that relies on overwhelming his opponent over time. That basically means that Bisping will need to score a stoppage victory – something he has only done once in over four years.

Rockhold has only ever been stopped twice in his professional career – which was in his second fight and against a pre-USADA Vitor Belfort. A volume puncher with little power and lowered cardio ending Rockhold is not going to happen.

Rockhold Already Easily Beat Bisping

November 7, 2014. The UFC took to Sydney, Australia for a card headlined by Rockhold vs Bisping. That fight ended within six minutes and a completely overwhelmed Bisping getting subbed in the second round.

That fight happened with both fighters coming out of a full camp – unlike this time around. Bisping had nothing to counter Rockhold’s striking game and he was quickly exposed in the grappling game with the now champion locking on a one-armed guillotine.

Since that bout, Rockhold is 2-0 with wins over Lyoto Machida and Weidman – both via stoppage. Bisping is 3-0 since that loss, but those victories all came via decision - against much lesser opposition compared to Rockhold.

Rockhold’s Counter Right Hook

One of Rockhold’s best strikes is his counter right hook. He uses it frequently to lay huge leather onto his opponents and has stoppage victories stemming from the punch. Rockhold loves to throw this punch and he does so excellently – especially while backing up, as it allows him to transfer his energy to his back foot and explode into the punch.

Bisping has already said that he wants to fight more like he did earlier in his career for this bout – AKA aggressively pushing forward with reckless abandon. Sure, Bisping could overwhelm some fighters based on this technique, but it simply plays into what may be Rockhold’s best strike.

UFC 199: Luke Rockhold vs Michael Bisping

Odds as of June 2 at Bovada

  • Luke Rockhold -800
  • Michael Bisping +500

Joe Osborne steps up to defend why Michael Bisping can pull off the upset and defeat Luke Rockhold at UFC 199.

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