"In my opinion, the hardest fight in the 185 [pound] division, other than Anderson Silva, is Vitor Belfort," Bisping said.
"He's a southpaw. I think that's one of the main things that complicates things because it changes up the striking. He's very good at jiu-jitsu, but that doesn't concern me. I don't think he's going to be looking to take me down and submit me. I think the main thing I've got to watch out for is punches to the back of the head. Got to watch out for those rabbit punches, because he does like to punch people in the back of the head."
Among others, Bisping plans to tap the services of Bellator contender Alexander Shlemenko to help prepare him for the bout.
He makes a habit of repeating his mantra about fighting "whoever they want ... anyone, anytime, anyplace." And after fighting Chael Sonnen on eight days notice and then accepting such a dangerous fight against Belfort when he could've waited, it's hard to argue with the man.
But ask him, and Bisping remains confident in his decision.
"If I beat Vitor Belfort, I think there's no question that I'm the No. 1 contender," Bisping asserted. "And I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is. I think I deserve it. If I beat Vitor, I deserve it. If I don't beat him, then I don't deserve to be in a title fight anyway."
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