• UFC 152

Bisping: I'd have taken title fight with Jon Jones

ESPN staff
September 18, 2012

Michael Bisping insists he would have accepted a fight with Jon Jones - if offered - at UFC 152, but he will not poke more fun at Jones in the pre-fight press conference, insisting the light-heavyweight champ is "an alright guy".

Bisping took to Twitter after the cancellation of UFC 151, which occurred when Jones rejected Chael Sonnen on eight days' notice. The middleweight tweeted: "Jones said he's not fighting Chael on eight days' notice. I did. Just saying."

Now Bisping and Jones are preparing to head to this week's pre-event press conference at UFC 152, where the former meets Brian Stann while the latter defends his light-heavyweight belt against Vitor Belfort.

Bisping admits he has actually enjoyed the odd beer with Jones, and any previous dig was light-hearted banter. When ESPN put the suggestion to him that he might mock Jones more in front of the media, Bisping laughed off the idea.

"I know Jon, we've had a beer and he's an alright guy," he told ESPN. "He's probably saying, 'You f***ing b*****d Michael Bisping, I thought we were buddies!'

"I never said anything other than I think he should have taken the fight. All he had to do was get a rematch clause in there, so if he had lost he could have said, 'I've not had a full camp, let's have a rematch'.

"Do I think he's an a**hole? No. Do I think he's scum? No. I think he should have taken the fight. Am I going to give him s**t at the presser? No! What am I going to say? 'By the way Jon, f*** you!' Course I'm not!"

Jones' rival on Saturday, Vitor Belfort, stepped up from middleweight to contest the 205lb title. Asked if he too would have accepted a bout with Jones, Bisping answered in the affirmative.

"I'd have taken the fight at UFC 152 against Jones, why not? I fought Chael on eight days' notice. I'm here to fight. It's what I do. Why wouldn't I fight Jon Jones?"

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