During his time in UFC, Michael Bisping was one of the toughest competitors, as he fought with one functional eye. And now, fans can get an inside look at Bisping's life and career in the new documentary Bisping: The Michael Bisping Story, which is out on digital and On Demand. PopCutlure.com recently caught up with Bisping who revealed what surprised him the most after watching the film.
"What surprised me was that it's not just focusing on all the high points, the more interesting parts for me are when it delves into the losses and then some of the guest speakers talk about how hard it is coming back from a loss and other people talk about their experiences," Bisping exclusively told PopCulture. "Then people like Michael Jai White are talking about the challenges going through life, being an alpha male and stuff. It's a really introspective, psychological look at the fight game. Yeah, no, I was very, very happy."
Bisping, a member of the UFC Hall of Fame, was one of the biggest personalities MMA has ever seen. And he backed up the talk by beating some of the all-time greats while winning the UFC Middleweight Championship. But his climb to the top came with its share of challenges as he was living in poverty and working various jobs to make ends meet.
"I had a lot of ups and downs throughout my life and in my career as well," Bisping said. "I left school at 16 and didn't apply myself and found myself in a lot of trouble and regrettably spent some time in prison and things like that. It was at that point when I hit rock bottom, I was like, 'Wow, what am I doing with my life?' and I'm actually turning around and I ended up becoming UFC champion of the world and did that. I lost vision in one eye along the way and refused to quit."
Bisping, 43, became the first and only British fighter to win a UFC Championship. He finished his MMA career with a 30-9 record and was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in 2019. When asked what's the one thing he wants fans to take away from the documentary, Bisping had this one message.
"Don't give up," Bisping said. "If something's worth having, it's worth fighting for. I know in my sense, it was literally fighting for. I was trying to turn my life around. I was trying to give my family, my wife and children, the best life possible. That was almost taken away from me with my eye injury, which I lost the sight in my right eye."
"There was many other injuries as well. I've got two knee replacements. I've got plates in my neck. I've got one eye, but I refused to quit and everybody wrote me off. Everybody said, he's not good enough. He's not fast enough, strong enough, athletic enough and he is just not skilled enough and no one gave me a chance, but I didn't give up on myself. I kept going and I ended up becoming champion of the world. I guess the message is if you believe in yourself, don't give up on yourself. Keep going, keep fighting."