Michael Bisping's pre-fight promises have been a UFC staple for nearly eight years now, but his promise to beat the "living s**t" out of Tim Kennedy in Wednesday's TUF Nations Finale is one he must back up to stay relevant at the top of the middleweight division.
Bad blood has been the bottom line of pre-fight exchanges between the pair and yesterday's final press conference was no different, with Bisping continuing to take exception to accusations from Kennedy that he's a dirty fighter.
Kennedy has talked his way right into a massive showdown between middleweight contenders desperate to prove they are elite operators, but Bisping in particular had a stark warning for his foe less than 48 hours before they finally collide.
Bisping is quoted by MMA Fighting as declaring: "He’s made videos, he’s mocked me, where I come from and my fighting style. He’s mocked my personality; he’s mocked the way I talk. He’s f*****g childish.
“He’s a f***g idiot and he’s going to pay the price. I’m going to beat the living s**t out of this guy.
“He’s going to eat my left hand all night long. I’m going to jab the f*****g living death out of him. I’m going to knee him in the face, I’m going to kick him in the face and I’m going knock that smug look off of his face.
Bisping has spent nearly a year out nursing a detached retina but brings a wealth of UFC experience to his 20th Octagon appearance, while Kennedy is stepping up a level in class after beating Roger Gracie and Rafael Natal in two UFC bouts to date.
Kennedy is an 11/8 outsider with the bookies in a fight oddsmaker's view as very close, with Bisping a slight 4/7 favourite ahead of what promises to be an interesting five-round showdown given the verbal jousts that have made headlines in the build-up to a midweek fight night.
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