Former Strikeforce contender Luke Rockhold indicated that he wants a rematch with Vitor Belfort after his liver-kick knockout over Costas Philippou but looks like he's willing to settle for Michael Bisping in the meantime.
"The Count," who is expected to square off with Tim Kennedy next April, per Fox Sports, took a shot at Rockhold for an old remark where he claimed to beat up the American Kickboxing Academy fighter in training.
Rockhold didn't flat-out admit Bisping got the better of him, but he hinted at it and explained that he was nowhere near his peak condition at the time.
@bisping Sad thing is I was able to compete hungover off a 5 wk bender switching my stance & goin 3 rds straight n the best shape of ur life
— Luke Rockhold (@LukeRockhold) January 16, 2014
Putting it in far more cordial terms, Rockhold then said Bisping would not be so lucky if the two ever met in the Octagon. Predictably, Bisping disagreed.
@LukeRockhold Im assuming thats an attempt at humour/ trash talk. Not bad for a boring bastard, but don't get carried away cos u land 1 kick
— michael (@bisping) January 16, 2014
Rockhold has now won 10 of his past 11 bouts, with his sole loss during that time coming against Belfort at UFC on FX 8 in May.
On the other hand, Bisping is victorious in six of his past eight fights, though he's just 2-2 in his past four matchups.
He came up short in title eliminator bouts against Chael Sonnen and Vitor Belfort, while he defeated Brian Stann and Alan Belcher via decision during that 15-month span.
According to the UFC's official rankings, Rockhold is the No. 6 middleweight in the world, while Bisping is right in front of him on the list at No. 5.
On the off-chance a Bisping vs. Kennedy matchup falls through, it seems likely that fight fans could get behind a Rockhold vs. Bisping grudge match.