TUF 9 Bisping vs Henderson

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Team UK vs Team USA

DANA WHITE has confirmed Michael Bisping will coach the UK team on The Ultimate Fighter 9 - whatever the outcome of his bout against Chris Leben tomorrow.

The 29-year-old Lancastrian has won the right to train a houseful of MMA hopefuls striving to win a contract with the UFC in the latest series of the hit reality show ? which this year sees a American fighters square off against their UK counterparts.

And UFC president White also revealed former Pride FC champion Dan Henderson is the company?s first choice to captain team USA, as SunSport revealed last month.

White said: ?Win, lose or draw, Michael Bisping will coach the UK team on TUF 9.?

He added: ?We?re looking at Henderson or Franklin to be the American coach on TUF 9.?

Henderson is currently in Birmingham as part of a PR drive for UFC 89 and is lending his support to training partner Rameau Sokoudjou ? who faces Luis Cane tomorrow night.

But after the show, he is rumoured to be making an appearance at the TUF 9 trials which take place at London?s Earl?s Court on Monday - along with British star Bisping.

Henderson takes on fellow American Rich Franklin in a light heavyweight bout in the main event at UFC 93 in Dublin on January 17.

It is understood the winner of that clash will get the job as coach of the American team on TUF 9 ? though Henderson is the UFC?s first choice because Franklin already appeared on the show as a captain on TUF 2 in 2005.

And White, speaking exclusively to SunSport, revealed why he has decided to have two of the world?s best middleweights move up to light heavyweight to fight each other in Ireland.

He said: ?Franklin lost twice trying to get the title from Anderson Silva so where does he go from there?

?He?s never lost a fight at 205lbs so I thought it was a pretty good idea for him to move up to that division.

?I don?t think having them move up weakens the 185lbs division because Silva walked through them both.?

Henderson, 38, and Franklin, 34, have both suffered defeats to current middleweight champion Silva, who is seemingly unstoppable in that weight class having gone unbeaten for two years.

But White reckons the Brazilian?s clash with 28-year-old Canadian Patrick Cote at UFC 90 could prove to be his toughest challenge yet.

He added: ?You don?t know what?s going to happen when he fights Cote. When two men step in and square off, anything can happen.

?Cote said it best when he said: ?Anderson?s the pound for pound best fighter in the world, he?s extremely good at everything he does ? but he?s a human being and anybody can be hurt. I?m going to go in there, I?m not afraid of him, I?ve got knockout power in both hands and a great chin and I?m going to go in there and mix it up with him'.

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I'm just happy that TUF9 doesn't involve a fighter with a belt around his waist ... I hate seeing a fighter who is a champion unable to fight due to the fact he has to make time for the reality show. Much better idea to have non-champions has coaches.

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  • 5 months later...

Sorry for major bump. Just watched the show. Look out for a guy called Ross Pearson, on the UK team. The guy used to train at the Muay Thai boxing camp I go to. Great guy who deserves to be in the UFC!

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I like both fighters, but I think its to early for Bisping to take on Hendo. People tend to forget how dominant he was in Pride and who he fought and beat. + I met him at UFC 78. Either way should be a great fights.

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  • 3 weeks later...
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