Michael Bisping doesn’t get hate behind Tony Ferguson vs. Paddy Pimblett: ‘He’s not an easy fight for anyone’

Michael Bisping thinks a lot is at stake for both Tony Ferguson and Paddy Pimblett in their upcoming fight.

Ferguson (25-9 MMA, 15-7 UFC) meets Pimblett (20-3 MMA, 4-0 UFC) at UFC 296 on Dec. 16 – a matchup that was criticized by many.

Ferguson will look to snap a six-fight losing skid. Pimblett will lreturn from ankle surgery after a controversial decision win over Jared Gordon this past December at UFC 282.

“A lot of people on social media are talking sh*t about this fight, and I don’t understand that,” Bisping said on his YouTube channel. “Paddy ‘The Baddy’ has got to come back (from surgery). You’ve got to give him a credible opponent, and Tony Ferguson’s a wild motherf*cker.

“He’s a fighter, man. He will fight tooth and nail. You literally have to finish Tony Ferguson to get him to stop coming forward. There is no quit in that man. At 39, yeah, of course he’s taken a lot of damage. But also (he has) a lot of experience.”

Despite Ferguson’s skid, Bisping argues that the former interim lightweight champion has been fighting elite-level competition. Bisping doesn’t see it as a layup for Pimblett, and says there’s an equal amount of pressure on him to perform.

“Tony Ferguson is still a dangerous man, make no mistake about that,” Bisping said. “And it’s a really, really tough spot for Paddy Pimblett because it’s a lose-lose, right? Already there’s people out there talking sh*t saying, ‘Nah, they’re just giving Paddy somebody easy.’

“Tony Ferguson is not easy. He’s not an easy fight for anyone. But because he’s lost six fights in a row, if (Pimblett) goes out there and wins, well then guess what everyone’s going to say? ‘Well of course you just beat Tony Ferguson – he’s lost his last six in a row. He’s been finished the last three times in a row.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 296.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie