Bisping facing neck surgery
“I have a condition called stenosis - I have a trapped nerve that causes atrophy and numbness in my right arm,” said Bisping shortly after beating Belcher. “I've had that for a while. It’s progressively getting worse and worse. I saw a surgeon about six weeks before this fight and they told me I needed surgery; there was no way I was going to pull out of this fight. I fought Vitor Belfort, fought Brian Stann and Chael Sonnen with this condition. I don’t like to let the UFC down, there's no way I was pulling out of this fight."
“I’m going to have surgery now. The surgery isn’t scheduled, but we’ve talked about it. It’s a minor thing. Well, it’s neck surgery, so as minor as that can be, but it’s a routine procedure. Apparently I’ll only be out two or three weeks, and then I’ll be back in the gym. I want to get back in the Octagon as soon as possible.”
Bisping also discussed the fight, in which the pair went back and forth in the first round, with Bisping coming on as the fight sent into the later rounds.
“I don’t know if I noticed him out of shape," said Bisping. "I just noticed I was finding a rhythm more and feeling more comfortable in the fight. As it went on, I could time him, and there was a big difference in his speed. I could see his punches coming a mile away. I could read every move he was making.”
The fight ended with an accidental but controversial eye poke that forced the bout to end, and go to the score cards prematurely.
“It was a shame I caught him with my thumb there at the end,” said Bisping. “He did get me as well, and I’ve got a little nick. It’s an unfortunate business, the eye pokes, but it happens. I don’t think it affected the fight, but I apologized because it was a complete accident.
“Alan is a hell of a performer. Going into this fight there was a lot of talk, but I’ve got nothing but respect for the guy. That’s just me trying to get myself in the zone and ensure a good performance. He’s been around a long time, and he’s a solid opponent. I had to do what I needed to get myself in the right place and make him doubt himself. It’s a huge mental game, and that’s all I was doing. I’m sure he’ll continue to have a great career.”