Michael Bisping defends his UFC middleweight title against former welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre at the main event of UFC 217 on November 4th, 2017 at the Madison Square Garden in New York, USA.
Bisping will be defending the title for the second time since upsetting Luke Rockhold at UFC 199 in June of 2016. The Count defeated Dan Henderson via decision to keep his belt at UFC 204. He has not lost since getting submitted by Rockhold in 2014.
St. Pierre walked away from the sport in 2013, citing wear and tear issues. GSP has won his last twelve bouts with seven of his last eight victories coming by way of decision. St. Pierre was once the best fighter on the planet but a lot has changed in the game since he left.
He will be attempting to make history and become only the fourth fighter to win world titles in different weight classes. Only Randy Couture, B.J. Penn and Conor McGregor are the fighters to achieve the feat.
Out Too Long
As expected, GSP opened as the odds on favorite in this title bout at -130 and the champion Bisping the underdog at +120. The odds have moved a bit with St. Pierre now at -130 at Bovada and Bisping with EVEN odds. Regardless of the numbers, this one should be an interesting fight to watch.
GSP is one of the most complete fighters in the sport and has not lost in a decade. Having spent so much time outside of the octagon leaves plenty of questions regarding his conditioning and ability to be effective especially since he is moving up in weight for this bout.
A Tactical Fight
Naturally, Bisping is the bigger man and has more punching power. He would like to keep this fight on his feet, where he has the best chance to defeat St. Pierre. Not many can keep up with the pace of the Count once he gets his stand-up going. He’s going to pressure GSP and make the Canadian fight going backwards.
St. Pierre, though, is a master of avoiding damage. Against Bisping, he will want to take this fight to the ground to negate the size and power advantage. St. Pierre is a very crafty wrestler who has excellent control in the canvas. This fight could be tactical and boring but that’s how St. Pierre usually wins. Nothing different here.
Bisping’s takedown defense is good but it’s not stellar. It will be put to the test against St. Pierre. We’re picking Georges St. Pierre to win a tactical battle. GSP by decision.