(“Braaaiiins!” Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)
Michael Bisping, quoted in Setanta Sports:
“I have to admit I was disappointed when I heard. You know, when all’s said and done, I like Chris Leben. He conducted himself well before and after the fight and, as I say, I like the guy. I’m a little disappointed that he’s done what he’s done, bringing the sport into disrepute, but it’s not really my place to have an opinion on it.
The UFC, as they always do, have set the example with the punishment — and they’re right to do that. Should he banned for life? I don’t think so, people make mistakes, people learn from mistakes. Plenty of fighters have recovered after testing positive, the standard is set at nine months and it would be unfair to go any harsher on Chris…
I don’t know if it makes my win any better, you can make a case for it because — without wanting to start slinging mud — he did cheat and I didn’t. I don’t know why he did it or if he knew he was doing it, but I know my performance was purely down to blood, sweat and tears — and that’s all the satisfaction I need.”
If nothing else, this has to be good for Bisping’s confidence; even a juiced Chris Leben could barely put a mark on the Count’s face. If his next opponent does turn out to be Dan Henderson, he’ll need that confidence and then some. Meanwhile, Leben will have to find an even higher power to trust in if he plans on rescuing his career after his nine-month time-out comes to an end.