When Michael Bisping squares off against Brian Stann Saturday night at UFC 152, the undercard bout on one of the company’s biggest pay-per-views of the year will steal the show and win Fight of the Night honors.
That may be a bold statement, but these two brawlers aren’t coming into this event thinking of anything besides a knockout; this fight will not go the distance.
With intriguing storylines galore, even the most casual MMA fans will find great joy in this classic example of a stand-up brawl. No matter which star you support, be prepared for an all-out war in the Octagon.
An American vs. an Englishman…In Canada?
This matchup is a classic battle of the All-American boy (Brian Stann) against the British brawler (Michael Bisping), but this fight won’t have the home-field advantage feeling for either man.
UFC 152 is at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
While these prototypical battles would usually find one of the fighters at a sizable disadvantage due to the lack of crowd support, the battle in Canada may be the only chance Stann and Bisping have to fight on neutral territory.
As much as fans wanted this fight on English or United States soil, the fact that Canada is hosting UFC 152 will provide an excellent environment in which the fight can be enjoyed without bias.
Major Title Implications
Stann and Bisping have been around the block in the sport, but both are looking to take the next step up on the UFC depth chart and contend for Anderson Silva's UFC middleweight title.
While Stann would need the help of Dana White to hop straight to No. 1 contender in the division, Bisping’s manager Audie Attar told MMA Junkie that he believes a win by the British star makes him the unquestioned challenger to Silva’s title:
If they're looking for that opponent that's going to sell pay-per-views, Bisping is the one. There's no question that love him or hate him, people love to watch him. And he's an exciting fighter. He tries to put on a good show for the fans, and I also believe he never disappoints.
The UFC is a business first and foremost, and what Bisping’s manager says is 100 percent correct. With the recent string of main events being ruined by injuries and boring finishes, scheduling Silva against Bisping would ensure an explosive main event.
While Stann has a knowledgeable grasp of submissions and Bisping is a talented takedown artist, both of these men want to meet in the middle of the Octagon and exchange blows.
MMA fans—hardcore or casual—love to see the fights with two men standing toe-to-toe throwing haymakers at each other, and that is exactly what we’ll get when these two bruisers square off.
There is always a chance that a fight could end in a surprise submission or that it could go the distance, but this fight has an at least 75 percent chance of ending early via knockout.
Stann and Bisping want to send a message that they deserve a shot at the title, and a KO will be the right way to show Dana White they mean business.