Denis Kang says Bisping has a lot to prove after Henderson knockout at UFC 105

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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Canadian Denis Kang expects to meet a motivated Michael Bisping next week at UFC 105 in Manchester, England. But he also expects some question marks to accompany the English middleweight when he climbs into the cage.
Bisping (18-2) was savagely knocked out by Dan Henderson at UFC 100 in July. The veteran American faked a left kick and then clubbed the Brit unconscious with a big right hand. Bisping, on his back and unconscious, absorbed another brutal blow to the chin before the referee was able to step in.
It marked the first time Bisping had been stopped. His only other loss was a split decision to Rashad Evans at UFC 78.
The 30-year-old Bisping will be looking to bounce back against Kang (32-11-1) on Nov. 14 at the MEN Arena. Kang will be standing in his way.
"I think he's definitely got something to prove in this fight," Kang told The Canadian Press. "To prove to himself and to his fans, because it's in his hometown. So I think he's going to try to make a statement with this fight. I don't think he will, but that's something else.
"I think that really after a knockout loss like that you're always going to be questioning yourself, about `Am I going to be OK?,' 'Is my chin going to hold up?' So that's why I say he's got to prove it to himself."
Kang, for his part, believes he still has some explaining of his own to do. The UFC has not seen the best of him, he acknowledges.
"No absolutely not," he said. "Unfortunately I haven't really shown my best in the UFC just yet, due to some unforeseen circumstances. But I really hope that this one will be the chance."
Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre has trained with Kang in Montreal and says there's plenty to commend.
"He's very well-rounded," said St. Pierre, who will be in Manchester to see Kang fight. "I think he just had a bad start in the UFC when he fought (Alan) Belcher. I'm sure if he fights Belcher again, he will beat him. Without a doubt."
Kang, 32, lost his UFC debut in January when he was submitted by Belcher at UFC 93. Kang's preparation for the fight was hampered by a fractured ankle sustained on the first day of camp. The ankle healed but it played havoc with his cardio because he was unable to train fully.
Still Kang had no problems taking Belcher down. That ultimately led to his downfall in the second round when Belcher pulled guard during a takedown attempt and caught him in a guillotine choke.
Kang returned to beat Xavier Foupa-Pokam at UFC 97, earning a unanimous decision over the French standup fighter.
The Canadian showed tight striking, good takedowns and a busy ground game against both opponents. But lack of cardio and grappling training cost him against Belcher, whom he was unable to finish despite trying everything from a kimura to an anaconda choke.
Against Foupa-Pokam, Kang admits he stepped off the gas a bit against the exhausted Frenchman as the fight wore on.
"I like to stay pretty active. I know I slowed it down a bit in the Foupa-Pokam fight but in the Belcher fight I was staying pretty active. I was always looking for an opportunity, I don't like to just sit there and get the points."
The Henderson loss was painful on a number of fronts for Bisping. A win and he might have vaulted to the front of the middleweight contenders' line. Now he has to climb back up the middleweight mountain.
While there's no shame losing to Henderson, the bottom line is Bisping stepped up in class and was found wanting on the night.
"It was a very definitive loss, but I think you've got to remember that before the Henderson loss, his only loss was to Rashad Evans which was a fairly close decision," Kang said. "I rank him up there as a fighter, I think he's a good competitor. He always come ready to fight and win."'
Still Kang knows that some setbacks linger longer than others.
"Sometimes you have tough losses and it takes you a while to come back. Sometimes you take fights right away just because you want to redeem yourself so bad, but it's not necessarily the smartest thing to do because there's losses where you need a little bit more reflection time and recovery time as well."
Their fight may depend on whether Bisping can best the Canadian at the standup game - and resist his takedowns.

Organizations: UFC 100, Canadian Press

Geographic location: Manchester, England, Montreal

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