The rumored bout between UFC middleweights Mark Munoz and Michael Bisping has a date, location and television network.
According to the UFC, Munoz (13-3) and Bisping (24-5) will meet on Oct. 26 at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. The fight will be the headlining bout on Fox Sports 2. Fox Sports 2 is currently Fuel TV. The network will be rebranded Fox Sports 2 sometime in the near future.
Munoz, the No. 6 ranked middleweight, is coming off a unanimous-decision victory over Tim Boetsch at UFC 162. The victory came nearly a year after Chris Weidman knocked out Munoz. Following the loss to Weidman, Munoz found out his foot was broken, necessitating the lengthy layoff between fights.
Bisping, ranked fourth in the 185-pound division, last fought in April of this year. Bisping won that fight, defeating Alan Belcher via technical decision after Belcher could not continue following an accidental eye poke in the third round.
Prior to the Belcher fight, Bisping suffered a technical knockout defeat at the hands of Vitor Belfort. Had Bisping won that fight, he seemed poised to earn a shot at the UFC middleweight title.
Bisping, never lacking for confidence or short on inflammatory words, spoke to Fox Sports about the fight, “I’m going back to Manchester and I’m going to knock Mark Munoz the f--- out. He can put that in his pipe and smoke it.”
The more reserved Munoz had the following to say about the upcoming fight, also telling of Fox Sports, “It will be an honor to fight Michael. I'm going to be training extremely hard and smart. I'm looking forward to it for sure."
With Chris Weidman knocking Anderson Silva off his perch as the top middleweight in the UFC, the division feels a lot more wide open than it did a short while ago. Weidman and Silva will meet on Dec. 28 in a rematch. The winner of this fight, with an impressive performance, could be considered for the next UFC middleweight title shot.